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May Department Stores Plans $2-Billion Expansion Program

Times Staff Writer

May Department Stores of St. Louis said Friday that it will spend a record $2 billion over the next five years to build new stores, including perhaps as many as eight new May Co. outlets in Southern California.

Thomas A. Hayes, president of May Department Stores, told the company’s annual meeting in St. Louis that the capital expenditure program for 1986 to 1990 calls for a total of 1,254 new stores. Most of those will be the company’s Payless ShoeSource self-service shoe outlets.

In addition, the company said it plans 30 new department stores, most of them to be opened by four of its units: May Co. California, Hecht’s in Washington and Baltimore, Kaufmann’s in Pittsburgh and G. Fox in Hartford.

Edgar S. Mangiafico, chairman of May Co. California, said in a telephone interview: “We expect a significant number of them to be ours.” That could mean anywhere from five to eight new stores, he said, adding that an exact number has not been determined.

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The chain is looking at a number of different properties and locations, including Bakersfield--"mostly within our own marketing area of Southern California, " Mangiafico said. He added that no store closings have been announced but that May Co. is now determining whether to continue its small store in a Cerritos mall.

Meanwhile, the parent company also plans to add 24 new stores to its Venture discount chain, which operates only in the Midwest. The parent company also will nearly double the number of its self-service shoe stores with the addition of 1,200 new Payless ShoeSource outlets. A May Department Stores spokesman in St. Louis said some of those new Payless stores will be in California, but “we don’t know how many yet.”

At the annual meeting, shareholders approved doubling the company’s authorized number of shares to 200 million, which will make a previously announced 2-for-1 stock split effective for shareholders of record on June 30.


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