Toys R Us rejected an $890-million offer from Isaac Larian, founder of MGA Entertainment Inc., to buy more than 300 Toys R Us stores in the US and Canada, stating that the offer undervalued the proposed assets. Apart from the US stores, the assets include intellectual property.
Larian stated that he had not been informed of the bid rejection, but he intends to continue his efforts to acquire the stores. This is not Larian’s first attempt to save Toys R Us. Last month, after Toys R Us announced liquidation plans, Larian launched a $1-billion GoFundMe campaign called #SaveToysRUs, which managed to raise over $60,000 from the public along with $100 million from private investors.
Larian himself pledged another $100 million to the cause.
A few other toy companies joined the Bratz brand owner in his efforts to go after Toys R Us, but these companies withdrew from the investment within a short span of time. This was when Larian decided to make his own offer to buy 356 stores in the US and Canada through a combination of personal, investor and bank funding. MGA Entertainment said it has no part in the financing.
Larian launched a $1-billion GoFundMe campaign called #SaveToysRUs which raised over $60,000 from the public
Toys R Us filed for bankruptcy and announced liquidation of 850 domestic stores after struggling with falling sales and a heavy debt load for years. The decision invoked shock and disappointment among people who had grown up in the shade of the popular toy store chain who eventually could not compete with Amazon’s growth.
Isaac Larian is not the only one making a play for Toys R Us. The retailer has received multiple bids for its Asia stores. Larian said he wishes to transform Toys R Us into a concept similar to a theme park like Disneyland that can give kids interactive and fun experiences which they cannot get online. This idea, however, was tried by Toys R Us itself through its Play Labs, a venture that failed to work. It remains to be seen what the next course of action will be from Isaac Larian’s part.