Play R Us to open holiday popup stores in 600 Kroger stores

What's left of Toys R Us comes back to vacation, with Geoffrey's Toy Box, created this month at around 600 kroger stores in nearly 30 states, said the nation's largest supermarket chain on Friday.

The grocery chain is the last dealer to create a game for former Toys R Us customers. Walmart and Target expand their toys, and Amazon sends physical toy catalogs to customers.

Moving on Kroger is not quite a surprise when the bankruptcy dealer Geoffrey the Giraffe, in April, made an unexpected – and for some unwelcome appearance on a toy industry trade show ̵[ads1]1; apparently sent by a group of lenders controlling the insurer's intellectual property rights and planning another action.

A company called Geoffrey LLC was formed last month after the funds that took control of the dealer's assets reverse plans for auctioning its intellectual property and chose to try to revive the brand instead. Ventures Geoffrey's Toy Box sections at Kroger supermarkets will sell toys from some of Toys R's former private labels, including Zone, Imaginarium, Journey Girls, Edu Science, You & Me, and Just Like Home, which vary in price from $ 19.99 to $ 49.99.


Kroger adds Geoffrey's Toy Box to almost 600 supermarkets for the holiday merchant season.


Kroger's move is part of an effort by financial companies Solus Alternative Asset Management and Angelo Gordon to raise capital to revive Toys R Us as a stand-alone outfit, according to Bloomberg News.

"We are pleased to offer Geoffrey's Toy Box this high season to allow our customers to buy a selection of toys once exclusive to Toys R Us," said Robert Clark, Krog's Senior Vice President for merchandising, in a press release.

"We are excited to cooperate with Kroger to bring a curly collection of products from our sweet portfolio of brands to American consumers this holiday," added Richard Barry, vice president of Geoffrey's Toy Box and former chief executive officer at Toys R Us.

The news does not go well with the 33,000 toys R Us workers who are depreciated without any deviations, "said Carrie Gleason, Political Director of Organization United For Respect, or OUR, a lawyer squeezing the financial firms behind the decision to liquidate Games R Us to contribute to a fund for affected employees.

"It's shocking that Solus and Angelo Gordon would launch Geoffrey's Toy Box without making the first of the 33,000 families who have worn since these hedge funds hit down the stores," said Gleason, whose group heads discussions with these funds to contribute to a fund to help displaced workers

"I'm bitter sweet," Ann Marie Reinhart, a 29-year-old playing R Us veteran, told CBS MoneyWatch. As a grandmother, Reinhart said she was "happy they open something for kids" in Kroger stores, and remembered how she loved seeing little children go into their own toys R Us for the first time.

Reinhart received a few weeks of unemployment in Durham, North Carolina, when she lost her job in April, and no longer got medical insurance and was looking for a 59-year job. "We feel we helped build this brand," she said, adding that the decision to withdraw from the company's former policy of paying retirement left the workers' feeling betrayed.

Earlier this month, Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, asked financial companies, including Angelo Gordon, Franklin Mutual Advisers, Highland Capital, Oaktree Capital, Solus and Vornado Realty Trust explain why they pushed to resemble toy the seller instead of reorganizing himself under bankruptcy.

Private equity investors KKR and Bain Capital are working to create a fund to support Toys R Us workers affected by the dealer's death, said Gleason. As for the other investors: "Hundreds of former Rux employees have come out to these hedge funds and asked them to contribute to the fund and they have refused," she said.

The disturbance of the dealer's death is in violation of the tens of thousands of dismissed workers, says Gleason, quoting the negative impact on the business of toymakers, including Mattel, Lego and Hasbro, who recently announced layoffs . "We're losing production jobs from this mess," she said.

Reached for comment, none of the eight financial companies involved immediately answered.

– Associated Press contributed to this report.

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