We are barely through the first quarter of 2018, yet the year has turned out to be unfriendly already. As the worst and unexpected news continues to shape the year, yet another heap of bad news arrives with the Toys R Us store closures. It will probably be a big blow to a lot of people, since we’ve always reminisced our childhoods by the number of playthings we acquired from this NJ-based American toy and juvenile-products retailer.
It’s no longer a rumor – curtains fall on Toys R Us
It is a wrap for Toys R Us after going into administration towards the end of February and Sunday 11 March being the last day for its most ardent shoppers to redeem their vouchers. Founded in 1948, many will remember its official cartoon mascot - Geoffrey the Giraffe. But a company that used to rule the 1960s through to the 1990s started losing its fame and has been grappling with a £15 million tax bill in the UK and looming bankruptcy in the US and Canada.
It was a somewhat pleasant end, however, given the incredible deals in its closing down sale. After announcing that all existing orders would be fulfilled if stocks would be available, Toys R Us gave its shoppers a reason to smile for one last time. However, there were no exchanges or refunds for any non-faulty shipments.
Toys R Us failed to survive bankruptcy and here’s why
If you’ve been frequenting any Toys R Us stores, then you know why the news of Toys R US closing shop is as eerie as it is shocking. First, this development comes just about six months after the company rolled out a reinvestment plan to get back on its feet.
The company’s CEO David Brandon wanted to upgrade its online stores, renovate stores and roll out an exciting augmented reality technology as part of revolutionizing the overall customer experience.
All these never came to be...
However, closing all existing stores wasn’t expected. The main reasons why this decision was actually made include:
- Heavy chains of debt metaphorically anchored around mascot Geoffrey the Giraffe's long neck. Toys R Us was so saddled with liabilities following the 2005 takeover by Bain Capital and other firms that by the time it was nearing liquidation, it had about $5 billion in debt.
- It’s a consequence of terrible timing that our beloved Toys R Us is going down the drain. Had it filed for bankruptcy after the holidays, most definitely it would have survived. September is never an ideal period to let the ardent shoppers know that you can no longer sustain yourself – and true to that, everyone scampered from shopping at their stores.
- Competitors knew that Toys R Us was no more with Amazon, Walmart, and Target using toys as “loss leaders.” All we can say, the holiday season was a disaster and not even the juicy deals, and the lure of redeeming their points could bring them back!
- Finally, we all know that in retail, nervousness and anxiety are contagious, and this manifested itself in full force in the Toys R Us closure. The unexpected "delays and disruptions" spread like wildfire, forcing many to ditch shopping their stores.
At the moment, little is known about what will follow, including who will acquire their premises. Thousands will also lose their jobs, especially if nobody chips in and re-employs them.
Even though Toys R Us stores are closing, you can still get their goods online. Check out what we have found and be sure to browse their web store - there are loads of fantastic goods for kids of all ages!