This Legendary Brand Is Closing Its Last Remaining Stores
Two stores were still standing and now, they'll also be gone for good.
There are few brands as iconic to generations of American kids as Toys R Us. Who doesn't remember Geoffrey the Giraffe, the hours spent browsing the aisles for your future birthday present, or the catchy jingle proudly stating, "I don't want to grow up, I'm a Toys R Us kid"? It was tragic news in 2018 when the toys and games superstore shuttered its more than 700 branches nationwide. But the good news was Tru Kids Inc. purchased the famous toy store and salvaged a couple of locations. Now, those stores are being shut down, too. Read on to find out more about the fate of the last Toys R Us stores standing and for another recent closure from your childhood that hurts, check out This Beloved Chain Is Closing All of Its Stores.
When True Kids Inc. purchased Toys R Us a few years ago, CEO Richard Barry announced plans for two new Toys R Us stores that would have a smaller footprint than the megastores of old and be more "experiential" rather than just places to buy products, with features like a huge treehouse in the middle of the store and event spaces for movie screenings. "Kids and families are looking for things to do on the weekends or when school's out. We know parents and families really value play and the value of toys overall," Barry said at the time. There was also talk of a pop-up touring play space called Toys R Us Adventure that could temporarily appear in select malls for a limited period.
However, the widespread shutdown of retail spaces caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has dashed these plans. As a business largely based in shopping malls—which have been hit particularly hard in this last year—Toys R Us was particularly vulnerable. "As a result of COVID-19, we made the strategic decision to pivot our store strategy to new locations and platforms that have better traffic," a Tru Kids spokesperson told CNN Business, confirming the two stores in New Jersey and Texas are closing for good. Toys R Us remains online, and more than 700 stores outside of the U.S. are still open.
While the physical stores may be a thing of the past, the spokesperson assured CNN that demand for Toys R Us "remains strong."
Read on to see other much-loved brands and retailers forced to shut down, and for one store you should avoid shopping at, check out This Store Has the Worst Customer Service in America.
After operating in the United States for almost 50 years, legendary chocolatier Godiva announced in late January that it would be closing all of its stores across the country. Nearly 130 locations will be shutting down by the end of March, while Godiva will keep trading online, and through third party retailers. And for more stores that haven't survived COVID, check out This Popular Clothing Chain Just Filed For Bankruptcy.
CNBC reported recently that during a meeting on Jan. 21, American Eagle Outfitters Chief Financial Officer Mike Mathias told investors the company planned to close 200 to 250 American Eagle locations. There are currently 880 stores nationwide, with the closures due to be phased over the next three years. And for another sad tale of a beloved brand, check out This Popular Pizza Chain Just Filed for Bankruptcy.
Stock + Field
Illinois-based company Stock + Field, which operates stores throughout the Midwest, announced in early January that it would be closing all of its physical stores after 55 years in business. "We hope to reopen stores at some point in the future," said CEO and chairman Matthew F. Whebbe. "But for now, please come in, say hello to your favorite employee, and enjoy the ridiculously low prices." And for more regular retail updates sent right to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
With its mission statement of "Love where you live," Loves Furniture took over many of the locations left vacant when Art Van Furniture went bankrupt in March 2020. From a total of 34 stores in Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, Loves Furniture is now expected to scale down to just one location in Michigan after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Jan. 6. CEO Mack Peters blamed trading conditions caused by COVID-19, along with the infrastructure and logistics issues Loves inherited, which had left stores and customers without their orders. And for more on the latest retail news, check out This Iconic Department Store Is Filing for Bankruptcy.