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Goodbye Toys R Us

Posted by simbalion, 11 March 2018 · 277 views

Well, here we go again. Another US retailer biting the dust. I have to admit, my reactions to the news these past couple of days has ranged from gloominess to anger towards the idiots who have let this happen to what is the last dedicated toy store chain. While increased competition has hurt Toys R Us, it seems the end began in 2005 when they were taken over by a leveraged buy out by three companies that borrowed over 5 billion and then dumped that massive debt into Toys R Us itself. So, after a little research, I've found Toys R Us is the victim of the same crap that brought us the crash of 2008. The first years of the 21st Century up until 2008 were called the era of the mega buy out. Basically, companies were being bought out left and right by venture capitalists who would rack up mass amounts of debt to do so. Sort of like the morons who were buying new houses every five years and piling up debt on debt on debt. So, in a nutshell, Toys R Us is the fallout from 2008 still happening. Yes, online competition like Amazon has hurt them, but they would have been in far better standing if they hadn't been forced to swallow the debt these investors shoved down their throat in 2005. Of course, these investors won't ever have to account for their failure
 
I admit, I don't have the childhood memories of Toys R Us a lot of people do. I only got to see Toys R Us and Children's Palace once as a kid. My dad was the main driver in the household and did not like traveling on the interstate or to Canton, Ohio where these stores were at. Still, I can still remember the wonder from that one visit and really feel bad for the kids of today and the future. Even now, I am still a kid at heart at times and recently Toys R Us has been a go to for items I have been looking for. Just this past year they were the only place for me to find the Tiny Arcades and they JUST brought out the My Arcade line. Yes, they aren't quite the Toys R Us of the glory years, but I think we will be a bit poorer without them. The only hope now is that a 'grassroots' movement might happen with smaller, private toys stores taking up some of the slack. There is some of that happening in my area already. If not full year-round shops, perhaps we might be able to see the big, seasonal wonders that used to be a staple of department stores reappear. I don't care how big Amazon gets, there is still a need for that wonder of walking into a shop filled with toys.






I was looking to get a certain Blu-Ray disc on Amazon and they only had one that was a region 4 disc that WON'T play in the US! But on E-Bay, there's a seller IN THE US that has the US VERSION and has about 5 or more for sale! Amazons head is beginning to swell! Can't get by on just your business name, you have to keep doing things right! Happened to Atari! 

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In spite of what some people say, Amazon is not the full solution to shopping. One reason why I stood beside Toys R Us over the years is due to being able to find a lot of items there. Yes, they aren't perfect, but there are items I have bought there that I have never seen on Amazon, unless you want to pay a private seller two to three times as much as Toys R Us.

Another thing being blamed is that kids prefer electronic games now. Do they really prefer it, or is it because of lazy parents who are all too willing to shove their curse of Steve Jobs (Smart phones) into their kids faces? I see that way too often at work. Parents are smart phone zombies and if the kid acts up, they just shove the phone in their face.

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I bought some gameboy games at Toys R us.

 

It was my favorite store and it's sad to see it to go.

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All the TRUs near us have been gone for a long time now ... at least we have Target and private toy stores. I have fond memories of hunting Atari 2600, 7200, and Lynx stuff along with NES, SNES, Genesis ... and it's also where I bought my Sega Saturn. That was a long time ago, though. 

 

I see that HASBRO and MATTEL are considering a merge, which is mind boggling. 

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Might be the only way for Hasbro and Mattel to survive in this crazy, crappy world. Actually, I recall rumors years ago that they had already merged, but obviously that didn't happen.

There are a couple private toy stores near me, but mostly educational aimed yet. They do seem to be slowly branching out. As far as Target goes, I have two Targets not far from me, one being near Toys R Us, and both suck for toy selection. Even worse that WalMart after their slow reductions in selection. It's a miracle I found my Oregon Trail! Probably the only reason is it is a Target exclusive!

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It is sad, knowing Toys R Us will be leaving us. Sears next probably. Grew up with both, shopped there often and even worked at Sears selling electronics for quite a while in my 20's-30's. TRU though... bought many a 2600, Intellivision and NES game there. A8 stuff too. Heck, even an Amiga monitor and a TurboDuo for $100 BITD. Also bought one of those NES arcade cabinets from them. Was a time TRU carried just about anything a kid would want and their gaming section was monumental! Looooong and tall aisles full of greatness... and the cards you'd pull for product, pay at the register, then go pickup at that security window are all great memories of mine.
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Also can't help but think Toys R Us could still exist, but online today. Have a large warehouse/distro center or three and become the premier toy and gaming cataloguer. Could give Amazon a run for their money. Amazon is dropping the ball big time in soooo many regards and you know all these things are cyclic. Kind of just seems TRU is giving up and letting Wal-Mart and Amazon have all the business.
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It is sad, knowing Toys R Us will be leaving us. Sears next probably. Grew up with both, shopped there often and even worked at Sears selling electronics for quite a while in my 20's-30's. 

 

Sears Canada is already dead.  Target Canada only existed for 2 years.  

 

Being a brick & mortar store is difficult against online retailers.  However, I don't think it's impossible - you just can't make as many mistakes.  The online retailers are also making it more difficult for consumers by offering far too many options with too little good information.

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Toys R Us could survive, if they weren't laden down with the over 5 billion in debt the purchasers shoveled onto them in 2005. These lousy corporate raiders, venture capitalists, or whatever you call them.. Assholes comes to mind! They are killing these companies and walking away laughing to the bank. :(

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1: My sister would be so upset if the toy r us near us closed, she hasn't seen the american girl section yet and would be crushed if she couldn't see it at all.

2: What about that tv show "The Toybox", whats thier next retailer going to be, Walmart?

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My toys r us is 4 buildings down from a bowling alley. Good for that last minute birthday gift (that has never happened to me i'm just giving a random example).

Across the street from the book store (fun day for a kid).

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I went to our Toys R Us today, took pictures, looked around.   Great times.   I was a Toys R Us kid.  Bought a lot of Atari there, saw the VCS, Intellivision, 7800, and Atari computer games.   When Tron Legacy came out I had fun all over again buying and collecting.   Really going to miss Toys R Us.

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For me Toy's R Us was too far away, so I never saw it until I was in college,  but it sucks to have it go away...The memories for me were of the Sears Catalog, the Wards catalog, and the LaBelle's catalog...And the physical stores of each of those.  I have pretty good memories of LaBelles having the best toy and video game selections, buying Atari games at Sears sometimes, and checking out oddball stuff at Ward's, and ordering from their catalog and then going to pick it up (Like my handheld Galaxian II game)...Ward's was essentially right across from my grade school, with a couple of stores in front of it, about 3 or 4 blocks from my house.

 

At any rate the vulture capitalists are definitely to blame here, although a killer online presence would have helped.  I'm even thinking Bain Capital was one of the 3 involved.  Bain was notorious for getting the Government to bail them out (Too big to fail and all that) and then stiffing them on the bill, stealing Millions from the taxpayers, even as one of them claimed 47% of Americans feel "entitled" to take Government money.  They asked the U.S. Government to take 9 cents on the dollar for their bailout,  claiming if the Government did Not take the deal, they would pay their CEOs Big Bonuses, and make Bain Capital worth only 3 cents on the dollar....

 

It's awful that it worked out that way!   The Government should have bailed out Toys R Us instead!

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Yep, just checked and Bain Capital is one of the holders of Toys R Us. Among others listed on this page here: http://www.ibtimes.c...e-ideas-2591523

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Bain Capital? Figures. They killed KB Toys too, same way. Was personal then. Now even more. These terrible people enjoy massive riches at the expense of those who worked there and built the business. What can we do?
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