The group of activist investors looking to seize control of Kohl's board has reduced the number of directors that it plans to nominate, to five from nine.

In a letter sent to the retailer's shareholders Thursday morning, the group — which has a combined 9.5% stake in Kohl's — said it originally nominated nine candidates "in hopes of working constructively with the board to choose from a large pool of candidates to construct a well-balanced board."

But Kohl's was quick to reject the initial proposal late last month, arguing it would disrupt the momentum that the retailer has seen in its business. On Tuesday, Kohl's published a new presentation for investors, highlighting its recent progress and plans to boost sales and profitability, hinging on key initiatives in beauty and activewear. It further emphasized that the dozen members of its current board have deep retail experience, including four directors who are either current or former retail CEOs.

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