Toys “R” Us is going out of business after 40 years, ending an iconic American institution.
The toy store chain will close or sell 700 stores nationwide, putting 33,000 jobs in jeopardy, USA Today reported. “I am devastated that we have reached this point,” CEO Dave Brandon said.
While Toys R Us once ruled the toy market, its sales have deteriorated under relentless competition from cheaper online rivals like Walmart, Target, and Amazon. Analysts said Toys ‘R’ Us usually made most of its money during the Christmas season, but experienced dismal sales this past holiday season.
The company said it still hopes to keep 200 stores in the U.S. open in combination with its Canadian stores, but that prospect seems rather dim.
Toys ‘R’ Us thanked its millions of customers on Twitter, writing: “We’ve seen an amazing outpouring of love and support in recent days and we truly appreciate it.”
To our loyal customers: We’ve seen an amazing outpouring of love and support in recent days and we truly appreciate it. Our stores are open for business, ready to bring joy to children wherever we can, and to help new and expecting parents navigate raising a family.
— ToysRUs (@ToysRUs) March 9, 2018
The reaction on Twitter was hilarious and mixed. Some said Toys R Us had no one to blame for its demise but itself.
“I blame you for your own death,” the Washington Examiner’s Tim Young tweeted. “You had Google, so you knew your prices were too high.”
I blame you for your own death… You had google, so you knew your prices were too high. pic.twitter.com/ZCJL0sDi2U
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) March 15, 2018
“It’s their own fault for not driving in customers,” Colby Martin of Indiana tweeted. “Stores look old, their online presence was lame, and no one cared.”
Amazon didn’t force #ToysRUs to close. It’s their own fault for not driving in customers. Stores look old, their online presence was lame, and no one cared. Y’all don’t need to go around blaming Amazon for their closure. Understaffed, under appreciated stores made them close.
— Colby A Martin (@Goblowsoup) March 14, 2018
Others serenaded the toy giant with comical mashups of its own past commercial jingles.
“If you haven’t lit a candle while listening to my minor-key version of their classic jingle… now is the time,” YouTube star Chase Holfelder cooed.
It's official. @ToysRUs just announced they're closing all 800 of their U.S. stores. If you haven't lit a candle while listening to my minor-key version of their classic jingle… now is the time. #ToysRUs #RIPToysRUs #ToysRUsKid #ToysRUsKids 😭 pic.twitter.com/rsvXznPVBB
— Chase Holfelder (@chaseholfelder) March 15, 2018
Many others expressed deep sorrow at the death of an American icon.
RIP Toys R Us….
All locations in US and UK…
Really Sad, I got my Wii there
— HMK (@HMKilla) March 15, 2018
No more Toys R Us. That was a magical ritual-like experience as a young'n. The anticipation while in the car.. Pulling up..and walking in to aisles and aisles of what felt like heaven.
Where am I supposed to take the kid on his first shopping spree? Amazon? 😞
— Crime Rhyme Houdini (@JustBlaze) March 15, 2018
We had many great moments together as a child. I remember staring at X-Men toys for hours in your aisles.
— Snow Sleep Records (@nosleeprecords) March 15, 2018
Dude I freaking love Toys R Us. I hate that they’re gonna be closing down 🙁
— FootofaFerret (@FootofaFerret) March 15, 2018
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