COUNTY NEWS: Toys R Us to close 'at least 26 stores'

Retailer Toys R Us, which has a store in Sussex, said it is to close at least 26 stores next year.

Monday, 4th December 2017, 3:17 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 3:12 am
The Hove Toys R Us store (Photograph: Google Maps)

The company said the move is in a bid to 'meet tough UK retail market conditions', but did not say which stores would close.

The Hove branch is on the Old Shoreham Road opposite Hove Park.

Toys R Us UK today (December 4), announced it is instigating a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), seeking creditor approval to reposition its real estate portfolio 'for future growth and profitability'.

Under the CVA process, Toys R Us UK said it has submitted operational and financial restructuring plan to its creditors and will ask for their approval of this plan over the next 17 days. If approved, the CVA plan could see the closure of at least 26 stores in Spring 2018.

The business currently employs 3,200 people, and it said it 'anticipates a requirement to make redundancies.

Steve Knights, managing director of Toys R Us UK, said: “All of our stores across the UK remain open for business as normal through Christmas and well into the New Year. Customers can also continue to shop online and there will be no changes to our returns policies or gift cards across this period.

“Like many UK retailers in today’s market environment, we need to transform our business so that we have a platform that can better meet customers’ evolving needs. The decision to propose this CVA was a difficult one, but we determined it is the best path forward to make essential changes to the business.

“Our newer, smaller, more interactive stores are in the right shopping locations and are trading well, while our new website has generated significant growth in online and click-and-collect sales. But the warehouse style stores we opened in the 1980’s and 1990’s, while successful in the early days, are too big and expensive to run in the current retail environment. The business has been loss making in recent years and so we need to take strong and decisive action to accelerate the transformation.”

“We recognise this process will affect many of our team members and their families, so we are committed to keeping all of our staff informed throughout this process. Our teams will continue to play a key role in turning our business around.”