IN­TER­NA­TIONAL RE­TAIL REELS UN­DER BANK­RUPTCY, TOP-LEVEL EXIT PRES­SURES

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A sad day for kids as one of the world’s best-known toy store chain, Toys ‘R’ Us an­nounced plans to shut down more than 700 stores in USA, and Canada

Toys ‘R’ Us said in a US Bank­ruptcy Court fil­ing that it must liq­ui­date, a move that would close 735 stores, leave 33,000 peo­ple with­out jobs and wrap up a 70-year run for a once-beloved hol­i­day shop­ping spot. With shop­pers flock­ing to on­line plat­forms like ama­zon. com Inc and chil­dren choos­ing elec­tronic gad­gets over toys, Toys ‘R’ Us has strug­gled to ser­vice debt from a US $6.6 bil­lion lever­aged buy­out by pri­vate equity firms KKR & Co LP and Bain Cap­i­tal and real es­tate in­vestor Vor­nado Realty Trust in 2005.

In a state­ment to the press,

Dave Bran­don, CEO, Toys ‘R’ Us said, “Go­ing-out-of-busi­ness sales would be­gin at all stores im­me­di­ately. Gift cards can be re­deemed for the next 30 days. Em­ploy­ees will be paid for no fewer than 60 days. This is a pro­foundly sad day for us as well as the mil­lions of kids and fam­i­lies who we have served for the past 70 years.” The clo­sure in com­ing months is a blow to gen­er­a­tions of con­sumers and hun­dreds of toy mak­ers that sold prod­ucts at the chain, in­clud­ing Bar­bie maker Mat­tel Inc, board game com­pany Has­bro Inc and other large ven­dors such as Lego. Toys ‘R’ Us is also likely to liq­ui­date in France, Spain, Poland and Aus­tralia, Bran­don said, ac­cord­ing to The Wall Street Jour­nal. It quoted Bran­don as adding that the re­tailer also planned to sell op­er­a­tions in Canada, Cen­tral Europe and Asia.

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