Toys R Us (TRU) has officially made a comeback as a new company called Tru Kids Brands and has become the parent of TRU, Babies R Us (BRU), Geoffrey and over 20 consumer toy and baby brands.
According to a press release, the new business emerges with, “new leadership and a new vision to deliver the magic of its iconic brands around the world,” however the formal global chief merchandising officer of TRU – Richard Barry – will serve as president and CEO of Tru Kids Brands.
The rest of the Tru Kids Brands management team is comprised of former TRU vice president and treasurer, Matthew Finigan to serve as CFO of Tru Kids Brands, former executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of TRU, James Young, as executive vice president, global license management and general counsel, while former senior vice president of TRU, Jean-Daniel Gatignol, will serve as senior vice president of global sourcing and brands at Tru Kids Brands.
The business also appointed Yehuda Shmidman as vice chairman of Tru Kids Brands, to advise on global strategy and execution.
Barry, said that re-launching the next phase of TRU is a once-in-a-lifetime chance.
“Despite unprecedented efforts to capture the US market share this past holiday season, there is still a significant gap and huge consumer demand for the trusted experience that TRU and BRU delivers.
“We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to write the next chapter of TRU by launching a newly imagined omni channel retail experience for our beloved brands here in the US.
“In addition, our strong global footprint is led by experienced and passionate operating teams that are 100 per cent focused on growth,” he said.
Tru Kids Brands will work with global partners to expand the TRU and BRU brands in their respective markets, while also seeking opportunities to bring the brands to new territories.
Tru Kids Brands will work with Al Futtaim Sons Co. in the UAE, Green Swan in Iberia, Keshet-Hypertoy in Israel, Lotte Shopping Co. in South Korea, Marketing Services and Commercial Projects Operation Company in Saudi Arabia, Tablez & Toyz Private in India and Toys (Labuan) Holding Ltd. in partnership with Fung Retailing in Asia.
According to the press release, Tru Kids Brands is operating out of New Jersey and is set to bring back former TRU employees to work for the business.
“We have an incredible team focused on bringing TRU and BRU back in a completely new and reimagined way, so the US doesn't have to go through another holiday without these beloved brands,” Barry said.
However, the response to the news has not been received well, with CEO of MGA Entertainment, Isaac Larian, posting on LinkedIn: “What about the more than $17 million TRU owes us? We were a supportive vendor. And we are spending legal fees to collect pennies on the dollars the court said we will get. Not nice. Richard Barry.”
A Twitter user also responded to the news commenting: “Just another company that will have pop up stores that will fail again and stiff the workers again. Toys R Us lost touch with kids and the public. The public doesn't forget how they screwed the workers over.”
Further details on the US strategy are yet to be released.
The announcement was made on 11 February.
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The humour and memes have already surfaced online. Source: @itzrare_yt on Twitter.