A big-box chain that shut down all of its US stores last year is announcing a comeback of sorts, though it will be more small box than big box. There'd been hints in late 2018 and earlier this year that Toys R Us wasn't completely dead in the water, and sources now tell Bloomberg the chain may be back in time for holiday season, based on recent pitches being made by Richard Barry, the CEO of new Toys R Us parent Tru Kids. The new incarnation of the toy brand will reportedly include not only an e-commerce site, but also a handful of 10,000-square-foot stores—about a third of the footprint Toys R Us stores previously boasted. "People familiar with the matter" tell Bloomberg there will be about a half-dozen stores, while a source tells CNN Business that "at minimum two stores" will open in 2019, with "more planned for 2020."
Barry had hinted that Toys R Us may soon enjoy new life back in February, when he spoke about Tru Kids taking over the brand, notes Fox Business. "We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to write the next chapter of Toys R Us by launching a newly imagined omni channel retail experience for our beloved brands here in the US," he said in a release then. "We have an incredible team focused on bringing Toys R Us and Babies R Us back in a completely new and reimagined way, so the US doesn't have to go through another holiday without these beloved brands." A Tru Kids rep tells Bloomberg the company can't say anything yet on its official plans for the US. (Read more Toys R Us stories.)