JCPenney To Cease Publishing Of ‘Big Book’ Catalogs


JCPenney will no longer publish its twice-yearly “big book” catalogs and will focus its print promotional efforts instead on what the retailer said are more timely specialty catalogs and further growth of its website,

According to the company, the discontinuation of “big book” catalogs “aligns with JCPenney’s ongoing commitment to promote the sustainability of forests and other natural resources, and builds upon its legacy of operating in an ethical and socially responsible manner.” The Company anticipates a year-over-year reduction of 25 to 30 percent in paper used for catalogs in 2010– continuing a four-year trend of declining paper consumption.

“To ensure we are keeping pace with consumers’ changing media habits and continued migration to online versus catalog shopping, we have increased our investments in new technologies, as well as successfully integrated the merchandising and marketing teams serving stores, and catalog into one enterprise-wide team that is able to consistently and seamlessly serve our customers, no matter how they prefer to shop with us,” said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, chairman and chief executive officer.

The company’s roster of specialty catalogs will include a range of home catalogs to support JCPenney’s leadership in home lines, such as “Rooms Babies Love” and the cooks catalogs; the “Little Red Book” publications for women’s apparel and accessories; and “Matters of Style” for men. Other catalogs, including the Christmas catalog, will continue.

“Big book catalogs have become less relevant as customers have embraced shopping online, where they have ready access to our entire assortment at any time on, one of the nation’s largest general merchandise sites on the Internet,” said Mike Boylson, the company’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “At the same time, customers greatly appreciate the smaller, more personalized catalogs we have introduced as well as digital and mobile applications that make it easier, more convenient and fun to shop with us.”