Toys R Us liquidation sales to begin Thursday

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If there's a silver lining in this mess, it's the recent report about KB Toys" potential return and the possibility it could take over some of the Toys "R' Us stores which are about to close down.

The toy retailer is in the process of closing 735 of its stores nationwide. Overall, the store was a sad vision of what's to come as Toys R Us closes locations. It will stop accepting gift cards April 19. The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September.

Toys "R" Us announced earlier in March that it was going out of business, which would affect close to 30,000 employees, according to the Deseret News. KB Toys is counting on it.

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A representative of Babies R Us couldn't be reached about the timing of its inventory liquidation. There's also the chance that 200 of the most profitable stores in the USA will remain open if the company (based in Wayne, New Jersey) can reach a deal to sell them to Canadian interests.

But, as Jeffries analysts led by Daniel Binder pointed out in a note last week, gains in sales to other players could take longer than some expect.

Operating under the assumption that the majority of parents will continue to buy toys for birthdays and holidays, Lennett estimates that the organic decline for the total United States toy industry will be in the low single digits. The exception, they note, is Ollie's Bargain Outlet, which typically sells at deep discounts year round.

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Jaime Katz: We've recently made some changes to our fair values for narrow-moat toy companies Mattel and Hasbro in response to the recently announced liquidation of Toys "R" Us.

That could pose headwinds, too, for the revival of KB Toys, once the second-to-last remaining national chain of toy stores.

Strategic Marks purchased the "Great American Toy Store" (KB brand) from Bain Capital in 2016.

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