From Geoffrey to Kids R Us: Toys R Us through the years
Toys R Us, which said it would close or sell all its 740 stores in the United States, traces its origins back 70 years to a single baby furniture store. Here's a look at Toys R Us through the years:
—1948: Toys R Us founder Charles Lazarus opens Children's Bargain Town, a baby furniture store, in Washington, D.C.
—1957: First Toys R Us store is opened.
—1965: Geoffrey the giraffe becomes the company's mascot. He appears in his first TV ad in 1973. The company sells stuffed animals, Lego sets and figurines in Geoffrey's likeness.
—1978: Toys R Us becomes a public company.
—1983: Kids R Us opens, selling children's clothing. It had a 20-year run before all 146 stores were closed in 2003.
—1996: Babies R Us is born, selling diapers, cribs and car seats. There were more than 200 Babies R Us stores as of last year.
—1998: The ToysRUs.com website is launched.
—2005: The company is bought by three private equity firms and taken private.
—2007: Toys R Us buys well-known New York toy store FAO Schwarz. It closes the store in 2015 and sells the brand a year later.
—2015: Toys R Us closes its flagship store in New York's Times Square, which had a 60-foot Ferris wheel, after 14 years.
—2017: Toys R Us files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
—2018: Toys R Us, following poor holiday sales, files a plan to close or sell its 740 stores in the U.S.