“There’s a magical place, we’re on our way there, with toys in their millions, all under one roof. It’s called Toys “R” Us!”
Anyone of a certain age is likely to be sent into fits of joy when they recall visiting what you recently voted the third greatest shop of the entire 1980s. Well, it’s good news for nostalgia fans: Geoffrey the giraffe and his legendary toy establishment are set to make a remarkable comeback in 2022!
Our visits to Toys “R” Us, a retailer that was founded in Washington, DC all the way back in 1948, were genuinely among the happiest memories of our childhoods.
We remember row upon row of exciting toys, games and gadgets being piled up as high and as far as the eye could see, and whilst our limited pocket money-based income meant we could never return home with as many of them as we would have liked, we still enjoyed lusting after the latest He-Man, M.A.S.K., ThunderCats and Transformers products.
We were incredibly saddened when the greatest toy store of all time was forced into administration in the United Kingdom in 2018, at the cost of 3,000 jobs.
The gap in the market has of course been filled by other, newer toy retailers, but we had all but resigned ourselves to having missed the opportunity to let our children experience the indisputable magic of Toys “R” Us. That is, until we heard some incredibly exciting news…
Toys “R” Us may have stopped trading in the UK and a number of other regions, but it’s still a growing business with over 900 stores and e-commerce sites in more than 25 countries, generating an impressive $2 billion a year.
Lucky for us, Toys “R” Us ANZ and parent company WHP Global have just announced an exclusive, long-term licence agreement that will enable Toys “R” Us ANZ to run both physical and digital stores for Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us throughout the United Kingdom.
“Since Toys “R” Us returned to Australia in June 2019, we have scaled quickly as customers returned to the much loved brand,” says Dr Louis Mittoni, who is the Managing Director or Toys “R” Us ANZ.
“My team and I are looking forward to developing technical and commercial relationships with UK based vendors and partners, and to engaging with the many loyal Toys “R” Us former customers and fans in the UK.”
Physical Toys “R” Us stores will start opening from 2022, but it is thought that the brand could begin online sales “over the next several months” using “existing e-commerce operations in Australia.”
So, whilst it’s looking like we wont be able to do our 2021 Christmas shopping in a lovely, nostalgic Toys “R” Us store, a trip to see Geoffrey and his impressive range of products certainly looks to be on the cards next year.
The UK has the largest toy market in Europe, with £3.3 billion sales in 2020, so perhaps it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that this legendary store from our childhood is looking to make a timely, money-making return.
We’re sure you”ll join us in welcoming Toys “R” Us back to the UK market, if only because stepping foot inside one of their brand new stores will, if only for a few seconds, transport us back to the carefree days of our wonderful 1980s childhoods.