Foot Locker Closing Stores, Consolidating Units

This post should have gone out last week but I got swamped at Surf Expo.. What a great show.

Foot Locker Inc. said it will eliminate about 120 jobs and close 117 stores by the end of January in an effort to become more efficient and boost its competitive standing. The footwear and accessories company also said it will consolidate its management staff and sharpen its attention to female shoppers. It said the job cuts would come in its home office and field management operations and will result in a charge of $3 million in its 4Q. However, it added that the job cuts and management consolidation will help save about $10 million in expenses in 2010.

Foot Locker said it will have opened 37 stores, closed 190 stores and remodeled or relocated 160 stores in its fiscal year ending in late January. It said 117 stores – mostly domestic Foot Locker and Lady Foot Locker locations – were likely to be shuttered in the 4Q. It currently has about 3,600 stores in 21 countries in North America, Europe and Australia. The company also said it will consolidate Lady Foot Locker’s management with that of its Foot Locker U.S., Kids Foot Locker and Footaction businesses. As part of this shift, Richard Johnson, president and CEO of Foot Locker Europe, will become president and CEO of the combined division. Lewis Kimble will succeed Johnson as president and CEO of Foot Locker Europe. Kimble previously served as managing director of the Foot Locker Asia/Pacific unit. Foot Locker said the consolidation should strengthen its brands’ position in the retail sector and improve coordination of its women’s product assortments.