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Kohl's to shut 18 underperforming stores after 20% profit drop

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Kohl's has announced it will close 18 stores across the country by June, after announcing a 20 percent drop in profits this week.

The Wisconsin-based company has not yet revealed which of its "underperforming" stores will be affected by the cost-cutting measure, with Reuters reporting the firm's 4th Quarter profits were hit by the unseasonably warm November and December.

Eighteen stores represents just a small fraction of its total outlets. It has 26 stores in Minnesota alone and just under 1,200 nationwide, according to its website.

But according to CNBC, the move is significant as CEO Kevin Mansell acknowledge it represents what's thought to be the first time in the company's 52-year history it is closing down multiple stores at the same time.

CFO Wes McDonald told the TV station the firm had only shut down five locations since he joined in 2003.

The Pioneer Press reports the retailer is trying to find "the proper balance between its extensive brick-and-mortar presence and its increasingly important online business."

The newspaper notes Kohl's is "wrestling" with the shift from store shopping to online, and though it's digital business has been growing it's not been enough to boost lackluster sales.

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