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We are the first to admit that ‘Research by Anecdotes’ is a low-ROI way to invest, and that visiting a single store is hardly representative of the other 699 locations receiving JCP’s August Denim Shop update. But let’s face facts, this launch is under a microscope. The rumblings we’ve been hearing about initial hiccups were true at least in the store we visited earlier today. There are bound to be delays with such a large-scale initiative. But if 10% of other stores experience a hiccup, our numbers (which have been well below a dollar since the Street was at $2.77 in June of last year) will likely prove too optimistic.  

Although anecdotal, the 1 JCP location we checked out this afternoon in preparation for the expected shop introduction tomorrow will not be ready to debut its Arizona stores on schedule due to wallpaper arriving late.

Here are a few things we noticed this afternoon:

  • The women’s Levi shop is already open although there we no i-pads in sight. This could simply be a store that did not receive the full blown Levi “store” however notable given the “denim bar” innovation.
  • The Arizona shops (both men’s and women’s) will not be opening on time despite having been scheduled to open with the Levi shop due to wallpaper arriving late. The images below show a view into the women’s shop which has no décor as well as the men’s shop which is just to the right of the store’s entrance; neither is complete.
  • The overall atmosphere of the store has a warehouse feel despite the areas under construction being concealed. Interestingly, with 2-4% of the location’s selling square footage remaining under construction over the next 2 years, there were concealed areas with no work complete inside. Our sense is this area is sectioned off for the September shops but we found this interesting nonetheless given the amount of the store already under construction.

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 1

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 1A

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 2

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 3

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 4

HedgeyeRetail Visual: JCP Shops Ready to Go? - JCP 5