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JCPenney automates sorting in $40 million distribution center upgrade

JCPenney distribution center Reno, Nev.
JCPenney's revamped distribution center in Reno, Nev.

JCPenney has updated the equipment and infrastructure of its Reno, Nev. supply chain facility.

As part of a self-funded $1 billion reinvestment strategy announced in 2023, the department store retailer is unveiling a new upgrade to its 1.67 million-sq.-ft. Reno distribution center. JCPenney has invested $40 million in the facility to increase order efficiency and speed for online purchases.

The centerpiece of the upgrade is the implementation of the SDI Joey Pouch sorting solution. This computerized induction, sorting and packing system includes new induction process technologies, a fully automated sorter to assemble orders, and a new packing system that includes invoice and shipping label printing for each order in the station. 

JCPenney expects this facility upgrade to improve its omnichannel customer experience by ensuring that online orders are complete with higher accuracy and shipped out more quickly.

The retailer also expects the upgrade to significantly reduce associate training time, leading to greater productivity and allowing more flexibility in staffing the facility. No impact on the hundreds of existing jobs at the center is expected due to the technology upgrade.

"The Joey Pouch system deployed in our Reno Distribution Logistics Center showcases an updated technology and we’re proud to bring this state-of-the-art machinery to our facilities," said JCPenney CEO Marc Rosen. "We look forward to experiencing its impact for our customers, associates and company as we honor our commitment to making every day count for our customers. When we announced our $1 billion reinvestment strategy last year, this is exactly the type of upgrade we envisioned for our supply chain. This new system will provide JCPenney with the best-in-class equipment and technologies to better support our associates and serve our customers."

JCPenney follows $1 billion ‘Make it Count’ plan

As part of its broader reinvestment strategy called "Make it Count," JCPenney plans to spend more than $1 billion by the end of 2025 to remodel its stores, upgrade its online shopping experience, and improve its suppy chain capabilities to deliver online orders faster. 

The initiative is designed to fuel long-term growth and increase customer loyalty and frequency.JCPenney’s reinvestment strategy includes enhancing its digital capabilities, in-store physical and technology upgrades, and supply chain optimization. 

Since announcing Make it Count in August 2023, JCPenney has unveiled an updated look at its new store at Willowbrook Mall in Wayne, N.J., the department store retailer’s first new opening in eight years. The company also recently introduced the new JCPenney Rewards and Credit Program as part of the plan.

JCPenney, which emerged from bankruptcy in late 2020 under new owners Brookfield Asset Management and Simon Property Group, currently operates 650-plus stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

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