Toys “R” Us is getting ready to close more than 700 U.S. stores, including its Babies “R” Us location.
The toy chain’s chief executive, David Brandon, told workers at its headquarters in Wayne, New Jersey, about plans to file liquidation papers Wednesday night before a bankruptcy hearing on Thursday.
The move has the potential to impact tens of thousands of jobs, including some in southwest Ohio. Here is what we know so far about the store closures.
1. How many stores will close?
The plans call for Toys ‘R’ Us to shutter all of its 740 locations in the United States, the Associated Press reports.
The closures will occur in the final months as the company has succumbed to large amounts of debt and shifts in shopping trends that shrunk its business.
Brandon said Toys R Us will try to bundle its Canadian business, with about 200 stores, and find a buyer. The company’s U.S. online store would still be running for the next couple of weeks in case there’s a buyer for it, according to the Associated Press.
2. What stores will close locally?
Toys ‘R’ Us announced in January that the company would shutter its Babies ‘R’ Us store at 2661 Miamisburg-Centerville Road in Dayton.
Two other area locations would also be expected to close if the toy chain moves forward with the decision to shutter all U.S. locations. The company has a store at 2500 N. Fairfield Road in Beavercreek and another at 2859 Miamisburg-Centerville Road in Dayton. There are also five locations in the Cincinnati area, according to the store locator on the Toys ‘R’ Us website.
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3. How many jobs will be impacted?
The company’s troubles have affected toy makers Mattel and Hasbro, which are big suppliers to the chain, according to the AP.
The liquidation will have a bigger impact on smaller toy makers that rely more on the chain for sales. Many have been trying to diversify in recent months as they fretted about the chain’s survival, according to AP.
The final nail in the Toys ‘R’ Us coffin may have been this holiday season.
Brandon told employees its sales performance during the holiday season was “devastating.” Customers and vendors shied away, making the company’s lenders skittish about investing in it, according to AP.
4. Could toy-makers feel a ripple effect?
The company’s troubles have affected toy makers Mattel and Hasbro, which are big suppliers to the chain. But the likely liquidation will have a bigger impact on smaller toy makers that rely more on the chain for sales. Many have been trying to diversify in recent months as they fretted about the chain’s survival.
Toys R Us has been hurt by the shift to mobile devices taking up more play time.
5. How did Toys ‘R’ Us get to this point?
Toys “R” Us, Inc. voluntarily filed for relief under Chapter 11 in September 2017. Toys “R” Us was $5 billion in debt as of April 29. At the time of bankruptcy, the company said it would close about one-fifth of its store locations. Closing sales are expected to conclude in April.
At the beginning of 2018, the chain had more than 800 stores before announcing in January that it would shutter 180 stores.