J.C. Penney announces appointment of two more Apple veterans; swings to Q3 loss

Plano, Texas -- It’s official: Two more Apple Retail veterans are joining their former boss Ron Johnson at J.C. Penney Co. The news came as J.C. Penney reported a third-quarter net loss of $143 million and issued a tepid holiday forecast.

J.C. Penney named Michael W. Kramer, CFO of Apple Retail from 2000 to 2005, as COO. Kramer has been the president and CEO of Kellwood Co. since 2008, where he oversaw a portfolio of fashion brands. He also served as executive VP and CFO at Abercrombie & Fitch, from 2005 to 2008.

"Mike is an extremely talented executive, and I am thrilled to be working with him again," said J.C. Penney CEO Ron Johnson. "His long experience in senior operational and financial positions at leading retailers, as well as his most recent role as the CEO of a large, diversified wholesale company serving the department and specialty store industry, makes him uniquely well-suited for this role."

J.C. Penney also announced that Daniel Walker has been named chief talent officer. Walker was the chief talent officer at Apple from 2000 to 2004 and continued as a consultant until mid-2005. He was instrumental in recruiting Johnson to Apple to lead the retail effort.

Also on Monday, J.C. Penney reported a loss of $143 million for the quarter ended Oct. 29, compared with a profit of $44 million in the year-ago period. Sagging comps and shrinking margins led to the performance decline.

For the quarter, sales dropped 4.8% to $3.99 billion, reflecting the company’s exit from its catalog and catalog outlet businesses, which it sold off during the quarter.

As previously reported, same-store sales dipped 1.6%.

“The moderate customer continues to have limited discretionary spending capability, and that was apparent during the quarter,” said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman III, executive chairman.

The department store retailer now expects holiday sales to be lackluster – with same-store sales flat to up slightly during the holiday quarter.

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