In what will surely be a crushing blow to people who love paying too much for Lego sets and marveling at the fact that somebody made action figures based on Home Alone, CNBC is reporting that Toys R Us might declare bankruptcy this week. The story says that these plans “are not definite” and that both the timing and the decision to declare bankruptcy at all could change, but at this point it’s looking like the toy retail icon could be following through with this plan at any moment in the next few days in order to deal with a $400 million debt that will be due next year.
Apparently, there are a number of reasons for Toys R Us’ current financial woes, including the fact that it’s owned by three separate entities (a couple of equity firms and a real estate investment trust) and that children these days are more interested in getting their grimy fingers all over their parents’ smart phones than they are in dolls and Transformers. Thankfully, though, things might work out just fine as far as Toys R Us shoppers are concerns. The CNBS story points out that declaring bankruptcy doesn’t necessarily mean that stores will close, and since Toys R Us—even with the financial problems—is very important to major toy brands like Hasbro and Mattel around the holidays, those companies will have a vested interest in continuing to support Toys R Us.