The New Jersey-based company, which declared bankruptcy in September as competition from Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. hurt sales, said it plans to shut down the majority of its locations in mid-April amid underperformance.
According to the motion filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, which was linked on the Toys “R” Us website, up to 182 of their brick-and-mortar store locations — which together constitute about 6.9 million square feet of retail space — could be closed.
Whether or not all 182 stores will close depends on lease and rent negotiations, the motion stated. Some may be co-branded Toys “R” Us and Babies R Us stores.
Eight of the 24 Toys “R” Us, Inc. stores in Georgia are affected by the news. They include:
2601 Dawson Rd (Albany)
2955 Cobb Parkway (Smyrna)
6380 No. Point Parkway (Babies “R” Us in Alpharetta)
1155 Mt. Vernon Hwy. (Babies “R” Us in Dunwoody)
6875 Douglas Boulevard (Babies “R” Us in Douglasville)
8160 Mall Parkway (Babies “R” Us in Lithonia)
221 Newnan Crossing Bypass (Newnan)
132 Pavilion Parkway (Fayetteville)
There are no indications any of the other locations would be closing.
“The reinvention of our brands requires that we make tough decisions about our priorities and focus,” CEO Dave Brandon wrote in a message to customers. “The actions we are taking are necessary to give us the best chance to emerge from our bankruptcy proceedings as a more viable and competitive company.”
Toys R Us has 1,600 stores around the world. Melanie Teed-Murch, president of Toys R Us Canada, said all 83 Canadian locations will continue operating as usual.
According to CNN, 2016-2017 marked the first time since the Great Recession that there was an absolute decrease in the number of U.S. stores. While there was an increase in store openings, store closings more than tripled from the previous year to nearly 7,000, setting a record.
In 2017, five other big retailers, including RadioShack, Payless ShoeSource, True Religion Apparel and BCBG Max Azria, also filed for bankruptcy.
And in early January, department stores Macy’s, Sears and Kmart announced plans to close additional locations.
This story has been updated to clarify Toys “R” Us Inc. store closings in Georgia include some Babies “R” Us locations as well.