Bloomberg News

Christopher & Banks Plans to Close 100 Stores, Cut Jobs

November 13, 2011

(Updates with share price in fifth paragraph.)

Nov. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Christopher & Banks Corp., the operator of the namesake women’s apparel chain, plans to close about 100 stores and eliminate management and operations jobs as the company works to return to profitability.

The majority of the closings, representing about 13 percent of the chain’s stores, will be completed by the end of January, the Plymouth, Minnesota-based company said in a statement today. The closings and other actions will result in per-share charges of about 39 cents to 49 cents in the next three quarters, the company said.

Christopher & Banks, which has posted net losses in four of the past five quarters, will rearrange some remaining outlets to offer its missy, petite and plus-size clothing under one roof instead of selling them in separate stores. About 7 percent of headquarters employees and 13 percent of store operations field managers will be eliminated, saving $2.2 million a year, the company said.

“We anticipate that these initiatives will help us to both improve overall store productivity and support our return to profitability,” Chief Executive Officer Larry Barenbaum said in the statement. “We continue to evaluate our cost structure and capital expenditure requirements and we will remain focused on carefully managing expenses and inventories, as well as preserving our cash.”

Christopher & Banks rose 5.6 percent to $3 at 10:15 a.m. in New York. Before today, the shares had dropped 54 percent this year.

--Editors: Kevin Orland, Robin Ajello

To contact the reporter on this story: Ashley Lutz in New York at alutz8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robin Ajello at rajello@bloomberg.net


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