US-based department store chain Macy’s is set to reduce its workforce by 2,350 positions and close five store locations in an effort to streamline its operations, the Wall Street Journal has reported. 

The move represents 3.5% of the company’s total workforce.  

As of 28 January 2023, Macy’s had 94,570 full- and part-time employees, excluding seasonal staff across 722 stores in the US

The decision follows pressure from an investor group, which includes Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital, reportedly advocating for Macy’s to go private with a $5.8bn offer.  

Meanwhile, incoming CEO of Macy’s Tony Spring is also prioritising the reduction of expenses on promotions to improve margins. 

The company was quoted as saying: “As we prepare to deploy a new strategy to meet the needs of an ever-changing consumer and marketplace, we made the difficult decision to reduce our workforce by 3.5% to become a more streamlined company.”  

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The retailer, which has been assessing the optimal balance of on and off-mall locations, intends to close five full-line stores in 2024. 

The layoffs will take place on 26 January.

A Macy’s spokesperson told Reuters that the job cuts and store closures were part of the company’s plan “to deploy a new strategy to meet the needs of an ever-changing consumer and marketplace” and an assessment of the “right mix of on- and off-mall locations”. 

In October 2023, the retailer revealed plans to open up to 30 new small-format locations across the country starting this year through to autumn 2025.