Administrators have failed to secure a buyer for Toys R Us and have informed staff that all of its 100 UK stores will close over the next six weeks.
The demise of the toy chain will result in around 3,200 job losses – 67 redundancies have been made today at the retailer’s head office in Maidenhead.
Administrators from Moorfields Advisory confirmed they have been unable to secure a sale of the business, despite the process generating some interest.
They will now commence a six-week wind down of the store estate.
Toys R Us slumped into administration late last month after an earlier attempt to find a buyer – and the cash required to pay a £15m VAT bill – failed.
The business drafted in Moorfields to handle the process, and most of the retailer’s stock has been discounted as it sought to offload its inventory.
Toys R Us appeared to have been thrown a lifeline in December, when creditors voted through a CVA, allowing it to close 26 stores and slash rents at a number of its other locations. The last of those 26 stores is due to be closed by Thursday.
In a statement, joint administrator Simon Thomas said: “We have made every effort to secure a buyer for all or part of the company’s business. This process attracted some interest, but ultimately no party has been able to move forward with a formal bid prior to the expiration of the stated deadline.
“It is therefore with great regret that we have made the difficult decision to make a number of positions redundant at the company’s head office in Maidenhead and proceed with a controlled store closure programme.
“All of the remaining 75 Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us stores will remain open until further notice.”
The disappearance of Toys R Us from the UK marks the end of an era for once-loved toy chain, which caved under the pressure of mounting debts and its failure to compete against both online players and rivals Smyths and The Entertainer.
The retailer’s US parent filed for bankruptcy protection last September.
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