JCPenney Officially Reentering Appliance Arena: Expanding Offerings To 500 Stores

At the beginning of the year, JCPenney announced it would once again dip its toes into the appliance business by testing sales of ovens, refrigerators, washers, and the like through pilot programs in three states. That experiment apparently went well, as the retailer now plans to expand the offerings nationwide and begin tests of other home-focused products, including flooring and window coverings. 

JCPenney announced Monday that it would open appliance showrooms in 500 stores by this fall and online at some point this summer.

The retailer says that stores earmarked to receive appliance showrooms will also have their window-covering departments increased in size by about 25%. To ensure the new ventures have enough room, the company says it will cut back on less productive areas, including mattress sales.

“We are taking steps to grow our business by introducing new brands, products and categories where our customers have shown us that there is a clear demand,” Marvin R. Ellison, chief executive officer for JCPenney, said in a statement. “Since launching major appliances in 22 stores last February, the response has been outstanding. The pilot confirmed that we should not limit our business to apparel and soft home in order to achieve significant revenue growth.”

The rollout of the new showrooms will begin in July, with new appliances being added to select stores each week until all locations are stocked with kitchen and laundry appliances.

In addition to increasing their appliance and window-covering offerings, JCPenney announced Monday that it would test new initiatives with Ashley Furniture and Empire Today flooring.

The retailer will test sales of flooring through a store-within-a-store concept staffed by Empire Today employees at locations in Tampa and Washington, D.C. this summer.

The tests with Ashley Furniture will include an expanded offering of living, dining, and bedroom collections.

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