Macy’s has announced plans to consolidate four credit and customer service center facilities into three, resulting in 4,800 job cuts for the Cincinnati-based retail giant.

The company will close a call center in Bridgeton, Mo. that has 750 employees. The call center's operations will shift to existing credit and customer service centers in Tempe, Ariz.; Clearwater, Fla.; and Mason, Ohio. An estimated 640 positions will be added at the three remaining centers, the company said in a statement.

Macy’s spokesman Jim Sluzewski said an analysis showed closing the Missouri call center was "the most efficient and effective way” to consolidate operations but he did not elaborate.

Macy’s acquired the Bridgeton facility in 2005 when the company, then called Federated Department Stores, bought St. Louis-based May Department Stores, the parent company of the Famous-Barr chain. In 2013, Macy’s closed its store in the Railway Exchange Building in downtown St. Louis, a location that had been home to the flagship store of the Famous-Barr chain.

Macy’s also listed 40 stores out of the chain’s 770 stores that are on a closure list. Four closed in 2015 and 36 are slated to close in 2016. The locations have not been disclosed.

The closures will reduce the chain’s expenses by $400 million. Macy’s has an estimated 163,000 workers. The company reports sales fell 5.2% in November and December at existing stores. Warm weather and lower spending by international tourists hurt sales. Macy’s said Wednesday that it expects its profit for its fiscal fourth quarter and full year, which run through January, to fall short of its previous estimate.“In some cases, there will be short-term pain as we tighten our belt and realign our resources,” Chairman and CEO Terry Lundgren said in a statement. “But our eye is on a long-term vision of Macy’s Inc. as a dynamic retailer that serves existing customers and acquires new ones through innovative approaches to the marketplace.”

 

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