Disney ( DIS) confirmed Thursday it would seek to sell its Disney Stores retail chain.

The company said it would probably close more stores as leases expire while the sale process proceeds. The company said it had reduced its store count to 387 in North America from 522 as it focuses on trimming less successful outlets.

Disney said the chain's president, Peter Whitford, would step down. Andy Mooney, chairman of Disney Consumer Products, takes over on an interim basis. The Wall Street Journal reported last week that the company was considering closing or selling stores as the retail business slows.

The big media conglomerate has struggled with weak results at its ABC television network, softening numbers at its Disney theme parks and a torpid retail environment. Ahead of the news, Disney rose 24 cents to close at $18.12.

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