KB Toys plans comeback as Toys 'R' Us shuts down

By RetailFOXBusiness

Closing down signs are seen outside the Toys R Us store in Coventry, Britain, March 13, 2018. (REUTERS/Hannah McKay)

KB Toys, the chain of shopping mall stores that closed in 2009, is considering a comeback.

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Ellia Kassoff, the founder of Strategic Marks LLC, said the company has “spent the last six months working on a sustainable model to bring back KB Toys the right way,” adding that KB Toys will have to successfully compete with both big-box stores and online retailers.

Strategic Marks owns the rights to KB Toys, which operated more than 1,000 stores in its heyday.

News of a potential revival of KB Toys comes as Toys ‘R’ Us prepares for a liquidation. The bankrupt toy retailer has laid out plans to close all of its 735 stores after recording weak sales and failing to find a corporate buyer. Toys ‘R’ Us has reportedly weighed a plan to save 200 of its strongest stores, in addition to keeping its Canadian business open. A hearing in bankruptcy court is scheduled for Tuesday.

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Kassoff said the impending closure of Toys ‘R’ Us has accelerated the effort to get KB Toys up and running, with the goal of opening stores for the critical holiday shopping season.

“We believe our model can withstand both online as well as other large competitors for not only the short-term but long-term as well,” Kassoff wrote in a post on LinkedIn. “We understand, we're not just restarting the only other well-known and loved toy chain in the U.S. but hope to find places for those 33,000 jobs which will be lost as Toys ‘R’ Us closes.”

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