Plano-based J.C. Penney files for bankruptcy protection as store closure announcements loom

Plano-based J.C. Penney announced May 15 that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)
Plano-based J.C. Penney announced May 15 that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)

Plano-based J.C. Penney announced May 15 that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)

Plano-based J.C. Penney filed for bankruptcy protection May 15, a move the company said would help it navigate the difficult business climate during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

J.C. Penney Co. confirmed in a news release that it had filed Chapter 11 paperwork in an effort to reduce the company’s debt by “several billion dollars.” The retail giant was also expected to announce a number of store closures in the coming weeks.

The company has entered into a restructuring support agreement with the lenders who hold more than two-thirds of the company’s first lien debt, the company said.

“We look forward to emerging from both Chapter 11 and this pandemic as a stronger retailer, continuing to implement our Plan for Renewal, and building capabilities focused on satisfying customers’ wants and needs,” Jill Soltau, the company’s chief executive officer, said in the statement.

The company said it had about $500 million in cash on hand as of the filing. It had also received commitments for $900 million in debtor-in-possession financing from its first lien lendors—about half of which was new money, according to the company.


The financing was expected to be enough to meet the company’s operational needs, J.C. Penney said.

The company said it would seek permission from the court to pay non-furloughed employees, provide benefits and pay vendors.

On March 31, the company announced plans to furlough more than half of its hourly workforce as part of cost-saving moves due to the loss in revenue related to the coronavirus. Furloughs also included employees at the company's corporate headquarters in Plano.

The company said it would also be reducing the number of stores it operates throughout the country. J.C. Penney has about 850 stores in the United States and Puerto Rico along with its e-commerce site, jcp.com.

“Stores will close in phases throughout the Chapter 11 process – and the first phase of closures, including specific store details and timing, will be disclosed in the coming weeks,” the company said.
By Daniel Houston
Daniel Houston covers Plano city government, transportation, business and education for Community Impact Newspaper. A Fort Worth native and Baylor University graduate, Daniel reported previously for The Associated Press in Oklahoma City and The Dallas Morning News.


MOST RECENT

The city of Plano has begun a construction project on Parker Road. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Parker Road construction to affect traffic in Plano

A section of Parker Road is being affected by a new six-month construction project that will eventually span from Independence Parkway to Preston Road.

Plano-based JCPenney announced May 15 that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)
JCPenney store in Lewisville mall among those closing as part of company restructuring

The JCPenney store at Music City Mall in Lewisville is among 154 stores across the country to permanently close as part of the retailer's plan to get a handle on its finances amid bankruptcy.

CMS also unveiled an interactive map that lets users search any nursing home in the U.S. to see its COVID-19 cases. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
CMS reports 321 coronavirus deaths in Texas nursing homes, nearly 32,000 nationwide

CMS also unveiled an interactive map that lets users search any nursing home in the U.S. to its COVID-19 cases.

Frisco announced the spray park at J.R. Newman Park will reopen June 5 along with the spray parks at Frisco Commons and Shepherd's Glen Park. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
Spray parks return to Frisco and more: Business and community news from the DFW area

Read the latest business and community news from Community Impact Newspaper's coverage of the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Baylor Scott & White Medical Center-Centennial in Frisco is part of a large health system that announced a series of layoffs and furloughs last week. (Courtesy Baylor Scott & White)
North Texas hospitals, hit by revenue losses, lobby for Medicaid program expansion

A group of North Texas hospitals plans to promote expanding Medicaid ahead of next year’s session of the Texas Legislature as the state’s health system deals with substantial revenue losses incurred during the coronavirus pandemic.

The creation of a task force is in addition to the district researching and collaborating with the Texas Education Agency, according to a June 3 update from the district. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
District creates task force, prepares for Plano ISD 2020-21 school year

Plano ISD shared its key priorities in planning for the 2020-21 school year as well as the creation of a planning task force in a June 3 update to parents.

Plano Senior High and Plano West Senior High will begin summer training June 8, while Plano East Senior High will begin June 15. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
Plano ISD senior high schools to begin offering summer training

Plano ISD senior high schools will begin offering summer strength and conditioning training over the next few weeks, according to spokesperson Lesley Range-Stanton.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Phase 3 of his Open Texas plan June 3. (Brian Rash/Community Impact Newspaper)
Gov. Greg Abbott's June 3 guidelines allow most Texas businesses to operate at 50% capacity

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott continues to lift coronavirus-related business restrictions.

Roughly 53 students make up this summer’s cohort and will begin work June 8. (Chase Autin/Community Impact Newspaper)
Plano internship program to adjust for coronavirus, move forward

The Plano Mayor’s Summer Internship Program will continue with remote and on-site internships this summer, according to a May 29 release.

Plano-based Cinemark announced it would begin a phased reopening of its movie theaters June 19. (Courtesy Cinemark)
Plano-based Cinemark to begin phased reopening of theaters June 19

Cinemark has announced a “multiphased” reopening of its movie theaters that will begin June 19, three months after the Plano-based company closed all its locations nationwide in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Registration is now open for a free drive-thru COVID-19 testing clinic to be held in Frisco on June 4. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Frisco opens preregistration for free drive-thru COVID-19 testing on June 4

The free testing will be offered from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the “Red” parking lot of Toyota Stadium. Preregistration is required.

Census reinstates some field operations in Texas following coronavirus delay. (Courtesy U.S. Census Bureau)
Census reinstates some field operations in Texas following coronavirus delay

Operations began in Fort Worth, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio beginning May 25.