After the full liquidation of over 1000 US locations in 2017 and 2018, Toys R Us is preparing to try its hand at a comeback with the opening of its first new physical US locations since its bankruptcy filing (and subsequent cancellation).
Bloomberg reports that the first location opened over Thanksgiving weekend in Paramus, New Jersey in the Garden State Plaza. The store is much smaller and more focused than the retailer’s former locations, with around 1,500 items available on-site and the rest fulfilled online via Target.
The Paramus location is divided up into sections by popular brands, including a dedicated section for Nintendo that includes both various Nintendo gaming products and live demo stations. It is unclear how much of a role gaming as a whole will play in Toys R Us’ future, given that games only accounted for 4% of the company’s sales in the 2017 fiscal year, and that games are currently not included on the Toys R Us website.
Toys R Us filed for bankruptcy in 2017 in the US in the wake of hefty debt, closing all its US stores and leaving its international branches though they, too, were struggling. However, the bankruptcy auction was cancelled in 2018 with plans to revive the business.
Those plans became more clear earlier this year as Toys R Us reemerged as a new company, Tru Kids, parenting over the Toys R Us, Babies R Us, and other brands. The Toys R Us website was relaunched in October, with order fulfillment completed by a partnership with Target.
Toys R Us is planning to open a second physical location in Houston, Texas on December 5, with a planned ten total stores to open by the end of 2020.