RetailWire readers were prescient back in 2007 when Toys "R" Us opened its first two superstores (the combination Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us concept) in Elizabeth, NJ and Redlands, CA. In a poll taken at the time, 91 percent predicted the concept would be a winner (50 percent, big; 41 percent, small) for the specialty chain store operator.
At the time, Tom McGoldrick, director of research and consulting for Questar, said, "Young parents are all about saving time and money. This format makes it easer to do both. Their big challenge will be getting the word out. They have to convince consumers that their prices and greater variety of products are worth driving past a Target or Walmart."
Apparently, Toys "R" Us has been relatively successful in getting consumers to bypass competitors and shop in its superstores. The chain just opened its newest 60,000 square-foot combination store in Woodbridge, NJ, and plans to have 43 operating by the end of the year.
"Customers continue to embrace the enhanced shopping experience these stores offer," said Jerry Storch, chairman and CEO, Toys "R" Us, in a press release. "The Side-by-Side store format provides exceptional convenience for parents, offering a wide selection of differentiated toys and juvenile products, and allows the company to cultivate customer loyalty as their children grow and they transition from Babies "R" Us to Toys "R" Us shoppers."
What is the growth potential of the side-by-side Toys 'R' Us and Babies 'R' Us concept?