NEW YORK — Toys R Us is retrenching once again.
The only two Toys R Us stores that opened in November 2019 as part of a small U.S. comeback attempt by the iconic toy chain have now closed.
The Toys R Us store at the Galleria mall in Houston shuttered on Jan. 15, while the one at New Jersey's Garden State Plaza closed last Tuesday. That's according to Tru Kids, a new entity formed when it acquired Toys R Us’ intellectual property during the iconic chain's liquidation in 2018.
The company says it is looking at new options for reopening but declined to offer specifics.
“As a result of COVID, we made the strategic decision to pivot our store strategy to new locations and platforms that have better traffic,” Tru Kids said in an emailed statement Friday to the Associated Press. “Consumer demand in the toy category and for Toys R Us remains strong and we will continue to invest in the channels where the customer wants to experience our brand.”
The two stores were much smaller, CNN reported. The locations in Houston and New Jersey sold fewer toys and focused on interactive and playground-life environments. CNN said the goal was to open 10 stores in malls across the U.S.
Toys R Us and Babies R Us brands are still operating in more than 25 countries in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, according to AP.