Toys ‘R’ Us is due to close its final locations by this Friday, June 29, 2018, and no one knows what to think or feel. The popular chain toy store has been a staple in children’s toys since 1957 when it was founded. In addition to the popularized online shopping fad that is taking over the retail market, Toys ‘R’ Us also accumulated $5 million in debt.
More than 30,000 employees will be out of work and looking for other jobs. Big toy making companies like Hasbro also find themselves in deep water as Toys ‘R’ Us’ final days are coming to an end.
Customers who were devout in-store retail shoppers will be looking elsewhere for their children’s toys. Stores like Walmart and Target are allegedly expanding their toy aisles and Party City is due to open 50 pop-up toy shops in the fall.
After filing for Chapter 11 reorganization last fall, Toys ‘R’ Us had vowed to stay open but sales fell short of their quota during the holiday season. Customers were shopping online through platforms like Amazon and vendors weren’t interested. In January of this year, Toys ‘R’ Us officially announced its plan to close 180 stores. Following up in March, they announced the rest of the 700 locations would also be closing.
Many loyal Toys ‘R’ Us shoppers are saddened by the news. An auction for the company name, baby registry, and other trademarks is set to happen in July so the legacy may be carried on! The iconic mascot of Toys ‘R’ Us, Geoffrey the Giraffe, will be moved to a children’s hospital in the HQ state of New Jersey.
Many longtime employees were also saddened by the news. “I’m never going to have a job like Toys ‘R’ Us,” said employee Patty Van Fossan, 54, from Ohio. “It was the best job I had. I was surrounded by children.”
Many of the longtime employees participated in protests for the severance they believe they are owed after the liquidation of the stores.
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