JCPenney Is 'Right Price' and 'Right Style': CEO

In order to attract those precious holiday shopping dollars, JCPenney has worked to satisfy the consumer’s appetite for lower-priced, but fashion-forward merchandise, according to chairman and CEO, Mike Ullman.

JC Penney
JC Penney

“We think we are on trend in terms of gift items. We think we have the right price. The customer is really pragmatic with how they are going to spend money and we think we are going to get an increasing share of their wallet and gain share.

To kick-off the holiday shopping season — the biggest business season for U.S. retailers — several stores posted stronger-than-expected sales in November.

JCPenney saw its best Black Friday sales in its history. The department store’s same-store sales were up 9.2 percent compared to estimates from Thomson Reuters of 3.1 percent.

One reason, Ullman explains, is JCPenney has worked to rev up its style citing an exclusive arrangement with clothing and accessories line Liz Claiborne , the integration of the cosmetics company Sephora in the stores and an agreement to sell MNG by Mango — the only fast-fashion retailer in U.S. department stores.

“JCPenney has been on a transformation journey the last five or six years to help step up our style,” Ullman told CNBC Monday. “Customers have known for years that we have the right price and the right quality, but now they’re learning that we have the right style as well and we certainly have had very good gift statements this holiday.”

For the last three months, JCPenney’s stock has been up more than 59 percent.

Shares of JCPenney closed higher to end at $34.42 a share on the New York Stock Exchange. The stock was slightly lower in after hours trading.