Toys R Us Announces Closure of All US Locations

The Washington Post reports that Toys R Us will close or sell its remaining US stores. While the last universal toy store, holding on against a changing retail landscape, had only announced the closure of 182 locations in the wake of last year’s bankruptcy announcement, the remaining 800 stores are now set to close. 
We previously shared the news from Bloomberg that a complete liquidation looked likely and that Toys R Us was unlikely to wrestle out of its debt through its intended downsizing plan. The Washington Post officially confirms this today, and reports that it’s been a rough week for the falling giant, with rumors of unpaid toy suppliers, although it also states that the closures don’t appear intended to all occur immediately.
It also appears that some stores may continue to operate as toy stores under new owners, with MGA Entertainment attempting to “organize a group of fellow toymakers” to acquire the Canadian arm of the business, per Bloomberg, and taking a look at the US arm as well. Bloomberg quotes Isaac Larian, MGA CEO, with words we hope won’t become “famous” and “last”:

If there is no Toys ‘R’ Us, I don’t think there is a toy business.

While Toys R US has been an icon for six decades and a fixture of the US toy retail landscape, there might be a special sting in the news for Transformers fans, in that so many of the brand’s exclusive figures, especially collector-oriented ones, have been Toys R Us items. Most of us probably have at least a couple of very special toy hunt memories ending in success in a Toys R Us aisle, or childhood memories of wandering the wonders on display, and it’s certainly the only major retailer to have its mascot represented as a Transformers character. (Though not the only one to be immortalized as a Funko POP! vinyl, sharing that, ah, “honor” with Target’s “Bullseye”. We have to consider this a wash.)
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