J.C. Penney Co. Inc. said Monday that it is launching J.C. Penney Home Services this month in order to capitalize on the housing market. The retailer is partnering with companies like Samsung Electronics Co. and Trane to test six programs in about 100 stores, including heating and cooling systems and bathroom remodeling. Services and marketing will vary by location. Consumers are spending $300 billion on home upgrades, according to a statement from Chief Executive Marvin Ellison. He also cited data showing that two-thirds of homes in the U.S. are over 30 years old. "There's a tremendous opportunity to capture additional revenue and minimize our dependence on apparel by catering our services to female homeowners who represent over 70% of our loyal customer base, and make the primary decisions regarding any home renovations," he said. J.C. Penney shares are down nearly 5% in Monday trading, and down 46% for the last year. The S&P 500 index is up 17.2% for the last 12 months.
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