retail news in context, analysis with attitude

MarketWatch reports that Toys R Us "tries to turn around its U.S. business, where comparable sales fell for the fourth straight year in 2014," CEO Antonio Urcelay says that "the company is now designing new formats for both its Toys R Us and Babies R Us stores so that they become places kids will leave with 'unforgettable' experiences. He declined to offer details or say when the company will roll out the prototypes."

The company reportedly also is looking for ways to cut costs - including possible vacating the Time Square flagship store in New York City that, at 110,000 square feet, features an indoor ferris wheel and an updated version of the floor piano on which Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia danced in Big. (Though they danced in an FAO Schwarz store, which is owned by Toys R Us.) The retailer is said to be looking for a rent concession for the high-profile space.

Urcelay also is quoted in the story as saying that he's not overly concerned about declining market share: "It’s not sustainable to gain sales at cost of margin. Market share isn’t the only name of the game.”
KC's View:
This is a tough game that Toys R Us is playing, and I don't have a lot of confidence that it can win, or even survive.

Incidentally ... I always think it is important to note that it wasn't just Tom Hanks who danced on the piano in Big. Hanks, after all, was 32 when he did it ... but the great Robert Loggia was 58 ... and I think that's worth pointing out.