Toys ‘R’ Us is planning to shut about 180 stores in a bid to exit bankruptc

See if your Toys R Us store is on the closure list

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Toys “R” Us Inc. is planning to close about 180 U.S. stores as part of a reorganization plan to emerge from its September bankruptcy, according to a court filing.

The move to shutter about 20 percent of its U.S. store base, which needs court approval, comes four months after the world’s largest toy chain filed for protection from its creditors, a response to years of lackluster results and an unsustainable $5 billion debt load. The closures will begin next month, with Babies “R” Us locations accounting for at least half.

In December, Bloomberg News reported that the retailer would close as many as 200 stores.

Toys “R” Us had a challenging Christmas shopping season in the U.S. and overseas, Chief Executive Officer Dave Brandon wrote in a letter to employees that was obtained by Bloomberg News. While the bankruptcy hurt customer confidence and disrupted other parts of the business, the company has made operational mistakes that need to be fixed, he said.

The closures include the Toys “R” Us store in Wayne, New Jersey, where the company is based, and the flagship Babies “R” Us in Manhattan’s Union Square. The targeted stores accounted for $925 million in sales in 2017, according to the filing.

Brandon’s plan includes revamping a dozen locations to better combine the baby and toy businesses into one co-branded experience, with more such stores coming next year. It will also cut the number of items offered in locations to reduce inventory, according to the memo. That will help simplify the company’s store operations and supply chain.

 by Steven Church

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