This Chair Symbolizes The Biggest Problem At JCPenney

JCPenney executives blame the retailer's newly renovated home department for rapidly declining sales and profits.

Failed CEO Ron Johnson burned cash revamping the home store and getting designer names like Martha Stewart, Michael Graves, and Jonathan Adler.

The problem? JCPenney shoppers won't shell out more for designer labels. Advertisement

Right now, JCPenney's home store is full of upmarket items that don't resonate with the middle market core customer, reports Matt Townsend at Bloomberg.

Take this $1,695 Jonathan Adler chair (now on sale for $1,015):


This accent chair comes at a price that most JCPenney shoppers would find exorbitant.

In fact, JCPenney has a similar, unbranded chair on sale for $355. Merchandise assortments like the chair show former CEO Ron Johnson's fundamental lack of understanding of JCPenney's core customers. Advertisement

Interim CEO Mike Ullman stressed that the home department will be revamped again to better suit customers' tastes.

With sales down 12%, JCPenney desperately needs a change.