By: Niharika Rajeev
As you walk through the sliding doors the smell of fresh toys floats around you. Rows and rows of toys tower all around you, teddy bears waiting for someone to pick them up and cool gadgets that bring the impossible to life. This was Toys ‘R’ Us at its peak, the pinnacle of every birthday and every kid’s favorite store.
Unfortunately, Toys ‘R’ Us filed for bankruptcy in 2017 after being challenged by online competitors. Toys ‘R’ Us was bogged down by a debt of $8 billion but managed to open its website and two physical stores in Houston and Paramus in 2019. Nonetheless, the pandemic closed both those stores by 2021 and Toys ‘R’ Us was back to square 1. In a last ditch attempt they opened one more store in a mall in East Rutherford, NJ; alas, the mall ran into financial distress and shut down.
A Fresh Start
WHP Global, a brand management company, has helped Toys ‘R’ Us create an e-commerce relationship that will hopefully help the company get back on its feet. Macy’s has pledged to entertain brick and mortar Toys ‘R’ Us shops in 400 of its locations. This relationship may help Macy’s with an increase in toy sales while this could mean a whole new beginning for Toys ‘R’ Us. “Macy’s cannot wait to bring the Toys ‘R’ Us experience to life in our stores,” states Nata Dvir Macy’s chief merchandising officer.
The in-store shops will range from 1,000-10,000 feet depending on the store’s size, however the stores might also expand during seasonal peaks. Macy’s has stated that the stores will feature a life-sized “Geoffrey on a Bench” photo opportunity and “hands-on demonstration tables” where customers can interact with the toys.
Nata Dvir really hopes to create a fun and entertaining environment in Macy’s as she states, “We hope Toys”R”Us kids of all ages discover the joy of exploration and play within our shops and families create special memories together.”
Beginning in 1983, with the CEO of Toys R Us being the highest paid CEO in all of America, Toys R Us has had major setbacks which ended in bankruptcy and the closing of their stores multiple times. However, this partnership with Macy’s could change everything and literally be the difference between bankruptcy and success for Toys R Us.