As part of its new growth strategy, Toys R Us will open modern, smaller format stores.
U.S. toy and children's retailer Toys R Us has announced the upcoming opening of its first store since the company went bankrupt in 2017. A sort of "Return" of the legendary brand will take place at the Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey. Another opening is scheduled for early December at The Gallery Mall in Houston.
The US largest toy retailer filed for bankruptcy in September 2017. Initially, 380 store liquidations were announced, but in the spring of 2018, it was announced that all 1,750 retailer stores would be closed, including about 800 in the US. The parent company that owns the Toys R Us and Babies R Us brands today is Tru Kids, founded in early 2019. To restart the retail network this year, the company teamed up with food giant Target.
A supermarket with an area of about 550 sq.m. will be opened in Paramus. According to the company's president and CEO Richard Barry, it will be an interactive store with a rich digital experience, while retaining the details of the "good old" format.
The space will have about ten consultants from leading toy manufacturers who will test products with children and their parents, as well as help order online products from an expanded range. The assortment of the store will be about 1500 articles. Four key brands - Lego, Nintendo, Nerf and Paw Patrol - will have expanded retail areas with product testing opportunities. A small space in the store will be allocated for holiday parties and themed events.
In future Toys R Us plans rent for shops on average about 900-1000 sq.m. The retailer is currently looking for suitable sites for development. In 2020, the company is preparing to open 10 stores in the US, including introducing its flagship format in New York. The retailer is partnering with mall space owner B8ta (also partnering with Macy's to launch pop-up stores), which is helping Toys R Us rent space to major toy brands and installing sensors and security cameras to measure shopping behavior in stores.