Penneys under pressure

The discount retailer is facing pressure from conscientious European shoppers and wage demands from workers in the developing world, writes Samantha McCaughren.

4th May, 2013
The Bangladesh disaster calls into question Penneys' dependence on low-cost Third World labour. Photo: Getty

It has developed a reputation for putting fashion on the shelves at bargain prices.

But the collapse of a factory in Bangladesh, with more than 500 people dead, reminded shoppers that Penneys' legendary value comes at a price.

Last week the company, which operates under the Primark grouping, announced a compensation fund for the victims of the factory disaster, saying it would work with local charities to provide aid to those affected.

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