JCPenney has hired brokers to sell off 163 locations across the US as the department-store chain slashes its footprint and tries to emerge from bankruptcy

Bankrupt department-store chain JCPenney is trying sell off real estate as it navigates through Chapter 11 with a plan to emerge via a sale of the brand.

The company has hired Cushman & Wakefield and B. Riley real estate to market 21 stores it owns and the leases for another 142 stores across the country to potential buyers, according to marketing materials seen by Business Insider. 

"We have no comment on the stores or leases we're selling," a spokeswoman for JCPenney said. 

"There's all kinds of interest and there are some good properties here," said Jim Terrell, a principal at the real-estate services and brokerage firm B. Riley Real Estate. "There are residential investors who might redevelop these properties and there's storage players who could use them for logistics. And then you have retailers themselves who could occupy it."

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JCPenney had previously stated it is closing 151 locations this year and 242 locations in total as part of its bankruptcy.

Michael Jerbich, B. Riley Real Estate's president, who is working on the deals to dispose of the locations for the department-store brand, said the leased store locations would likely all be closed and sold off by the fall. Bids are due for the leases by mid-September.

The owned stores could take longer to sell, he said.

"The owned properties are still operating and their closing dates will vary, with some continuing to operate for some time while others could close sooner," Jerbich said.

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