In consolidation, Macy's puts focus on local stores

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Macy's Inc. will consolidate three divisions and focus more heavily on the needs of local markets in an effort to accelerate same-store sales growth and reduce expenses.

The new strategy calls for engaging customers more effectively in stores by reallocating resources to place more emphasis and talent at the local market level, thereby insuring core customers surrounding each Macy's store find merchandise assortments, size ranges, marketing programs and shopping experiences that are custom tailored to their needs. At the same time, the strategy is expected to reduce total costs.

In essence, Macy's plans “to drive sales growth by improving its knowledge at the local level and then acting quickly on that knowledge,” said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president/CEO of Macy's, in a statement.

Concurrent with these moves, Macy's will begin consolidating its Minneapolis-based Macy's North organization into New York-based Macy's East, its St. Louis-based Macy's Midwest organization into Atlanta-based Macy's South and its Seattle-based Macy's Northwest organization into San Francisco-based Macy's West. The Atlanta-based division will be renamed Macy's Central. The consolidations of divisional central office are expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2008 and will affect approximately 950 positions at the Macy's North headquarters offices, 850 positions at the Macy's Midwest headquarters, and 750 positions at the Macy's Northwest headquarters offices.

The company also revealed same-store sales for the final four weeks of fiscal 2007 compared with the same period during the previous year were down 7.1%. For the 13-week fourth quarter of fiscal 2007, Macy Inc.'s sales totaled $8.597 billion, down 6.1% from last year.

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