Ascena to launch ecommerce operations at Greencastle site

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Ascena Retail Group Inc., a leading specialty retailer of apparel for women and tween girls, has announced plans to commence ecommerce fulfillment operations in the former Greencastle distribution facility, beginning spring 2014.

Ascena, which acquired Charming Shoppes Inc. in June 2012, operates through its subsidiaries the distribution needs of the company's Justice, Lane Bryant, maurices, dressbarn and Catherines brands.

The company has invested in material handling equipment and IT systems to transform the 126-acre Greencastle campus in the former IBM building along Indianapolis Road to become its national ecommerce fulfillment center.

The transitioning business model will require the facility to alter its operating model to a two-shift, six-day-a-week schedule to competitively meet the customer demands of ecommerce fulfillment.

Ascena plans to continue to employ all the current full-time associates at the facility and remains committed to growth and the creation of new jobs.

"We are pleased to partner with the state of Indiana, Putnam County and the city of Greencastle on this project," David Jaffe, president and chief executive office of Ascena stated. "We have been thoughtfully developing strategies that would best use our distribution centers across the country and enable us to provide superior service levels to our stores and customers.

"Online sales continue to be the most rapidly growing part of our business, and the efficient operation of ecommerce distribution is a critical component of our ability to serve our customers in an exceptional manner. We are very excited to enter into the next stage of this strategy with the expansion of the Greencastle facility and commencement of ecommerce fulfillment operations this spring."

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation has offered Ascena conditional tax credits and training grants based on the company's job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives.

The city of Greencastle approved additional property tax abatement and other incentives at the request of the Greencastle/Putnam County Development Center Inc.

Ascena Retail Group Inc. operates through its subsidiaries approximately 3,900 stores throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada.

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