Macy CEO Jeff Gennett told CNBC Jim Kramer on Thursday that the retailer has not reached any pre-determined conclusions about spinning off its e-commerce division – a move that shareholder activist Yana Partners hopes will take.
Jennett’s comments in an interview with Mad Money came after Macy’s announced earlier Thursday that it had hired consulting firm AlixPartners to study its business structure.
“Council, I, our advisers, we are constantly looking at this and looking at what the company is more valuable for the shareholder – as a single company or as separate companies?” Jennett said.
Macy’s started to achieve success thanks to the so-called “North Star strategy”, “There is even more room for improvement ahead,” Jennett said. “But given the importance the market places on e-commerce, we needed to take another look at it,” said the CEO, who took over the department store operator more than four years ago.
AlixPartners is going to pressure Macy’s into its structure, Jennett said. “We do not have any conclusions, but we will be transparent with the market as to where these conclusions will lead us,” he said.
In October, CNBC announced that Jana Partners had acquired a stake in Macy’s and sent a letter to the company’s board of directors urging it to transform its e-commerce operations into a separate firm that could receive a higher market value. Saks Fifth Avenue, the luxury department store operator, completed a similar side project deal earlier this year.
“At the end of the day, I think everyone can agree with multi-channel customer behavior,” Macy’s Gennette said. “This client will be respected at all costs.”
Jennett’s appearance in Mad Money comes after Macy’s reported third-quarter earnings and earnings that beat Wall Street estimates. Earnings per share of $ 1.23 beat forecast of 31 cents, and sales were $ 5.4 billion more than expected $ 5.2 billion.
Macy’s closed Thursday 21.17% higher at $ 37.37 a share as investors welcomed not only good quarterly results, but also the company’s decision to hire AlixPartners. Macy’s also announced on Thursday plans for a digital marketplace, slated to launch in late 2022.
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