After the news broke out that negotiations are in order that might revive Toys R Us in the US and in the UK, hope was renewed on the possibility of seeing the toy giant opening its doors once again. Though the details of the negotiations were still a bit sketchy at that time, it looks like more info is coming in which gives us a hint on what Toys R Us will be at the wake of its revival. And today, an official press release from TRU itself has finally shed light on what will happen to the beloved toy store. To be clear about one thing: a planned buyout of the company was eventually cancelled because TRU’s controlling lenders saw that the company brand and name is too valuable for such a decision. Their solution is to transform TRU and rebrand it accordingly as Geoffrey’s Toy Box. Here’s a portion of the press release which focuses on what we can expect from the new rebranding.
Geoffrey, LLC, as reorganized, will control a portfolio of intellectual property that includes trademarks, ecommerce assets and data associated with the Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us businesses in the United States and all over the world, including a portfolio of over 20 well-known toy and baby brands such as Imaginarium, Koala Baby, Fastlane and Journey Girls. The reorganized company will own rights to the Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us brands in all markets globally, with the exception of Canada. It will also become the licensor of the brands to the company’s existing network of franchisees operating in countries across Asia, Europe and the Middle East, and in South Africa.
As stated in the above press release, Geoffrey’s Toy Box will give emphasis on their existing portfolio of IPs and will own the rights to all Toys R Us and Babies R Us stores and brands. Exempted from this is TRU Canada. It is also interesting to note that in the recent Dallas Toy Preview, Geoffrey’s Toy Box is specifically described as,
“Wholesale toy distributor and intellectual property company whose focus is on popular play patterns across trusted brands that kids and parents love. Geoffrey’s Toy Box is a fully outfitted organization with design, development and global sourcing expertise. Portfolio includes popular brands like Journey Girls, Fastlane, True Heroes, You & Me, Imaginarium, Just like Home and more!”
It is then followed by a list of product categories that it will offer. Geoffrey’s Toy Box will follow a “shop-within-a-shop” strategy where they will partner with other big retailers and malls for that floor space in order to meet the demands of the shopping crowd especially as the holiday season kicks in. This is somehow similar to what LEGO is trying to accomplish with its LEGO Pop-Up Stores concept.
We still don’t have any information yet on what specific third party toy brands will Geoffrey’s Toy Box will carry, but there is a good possibility that we might still see the LEGO brand as one of them. The only question is if this strategy will somehow be able to bring back that nostalgic appeal of visiting a TRU toy store, and if this will be enough to significantly compete against online retail giant Amazon.
What’s your take on this brick fans? Are you excited to see how Geoffrey’s Toy Box will turn out? Are we to see upcoming LEGO sets displayed in their store shelves eventually? Share your thoughts below.