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Toys R Us is going Toys R Bust

Photo: Tim Boyle/Getty Images

In a move that, unlike most stories of its kind, isn’t being blamed on millennials—yet—CNBC reports that Toys R Us is planning to close around 180 stores across the United States, one-fifth of its current fleet. (Canada won’t be affected.) It’s a nostalgic loss for those of us who grew up eagerly anticipating the opportunity to wander aisle after aisle of shiny temporary distractions in exceedingly complicated packaging as a reward for a good report card or not hitting our siblings at the supermarket or whatever. It’s also a sign of major financial distress at the company, which is shuttering the stores in an attempt to emerge from bankruptcy protection.

Toys R Us first entered bankruptcy proceedings four months ago, just before the all-important holiday season; apparently, sales during that period were not enough to remedy the situation, thus the store closings. Toys R Us has struggled to establish itself online, where it’s been eclipsed by mega-online retailer Amazon. It’s also got some serious competition from big-box stores like Target, which CNBC predicts stands to profit most from the closings simply because Toys R Us and Target stores are often in close physical proximity to one another.

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