By and  on November 7, 2008

The Talbots Inc. on Thursday put its J. Jill brand on the selling block to focus on its core Talbots business, a decision that caused the specialty chain to withdraw its previously announced outlook for the second half of fiscal 2008.

The company, which purchased J. Jill in February 2006 for about $517 million in cash, said it plans to report third-quarter operating results on Nov. 25, when it will provide further details concerning its outlook. The incorporation of J. Jill into Talbots was considered a challenge from the start, but went forward based in part on the two retailers’ mutual focus on the mature 35-and-older woman and their geographical proximity. Talbots is based in Hingham, Mass., and J. Jill was originally headquartered in Quincy, Mass., just seven miles away.

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