It is strange to think that as of Tuesday evening (24th of April) there will be no more Toys R Us stores trading in the UK. With most already having closed their doors, the final batch of stores lock up for the last time this Monday or Tuesday.
I took a final nostalgic trip to my local store in Preston over the weekend, and it was sad to see the store reduced to the state you see in the images below.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Toys R Us employees for all their hard work over the many years that Toys R Us has been serving UK collectors. We hope they have all found alternative employment and wish them the best for the future.
The UK market is going to be a very interesting place in the coming weeks and months as we see how things settle after the removal of the biggest player. We suspect Smyths will alter very little in terms of their product and service offering, and they may well now look for new stores in areas once served by a Toys R Us. They are also going to be busy having confirmed acquisition of Toys R Us in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. We collectors may continue to drop lucky with Smyths who do seem very fluid in their stock of lines like Star Wars Black Series and Marvel Legends.
The supermarkets are bound now to take advantage, is it a coincidence that Asda are the only major retailer with the Infinity War Legends at this point? Others that will flourish, most likely on older stock, are the discount brands like Home Bargains and TK Maxx. The other player is of course The Entertainer. but they seem content in their own bubble and like Smyths we will have to watch out for the surprise stocks.