The Toys R Us Troubles Thread

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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby lakebot » Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:11 pm

Simplify wrote:
The Cause and Consequences of the Retail Apocalypse"
Private equity firms overburdened businesses with debt, and now workers are paying the price. Will policymakers do anything about it?
By DAVID DAYEN, The New Republic, Nov. 14, 2018

[...] RadioShack, The Limited, Payless, and Toys 'R' Us are among 19 retail bankruptcies this year. Some point to Amazon and other online retailers for wrestling away market share, but e-commerce sales in the second quarter of 2017 only hit 8.9 percent of total sales. There’s still plenty of opportunity for retail outlets with physical space.

The real reason so many companies are sick, as Bloomberg explained in a recent feature, has to do with debt. Private equity firms purchased numerous chain retailers over the past decade, loading them up with unsustainable debt payments as part of a disastrous business strategy.


Damn you, Cyclomney.

Buyout managers, including Bain Capital and longtime firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, stripped out nearly $2 billion in cash while debt levels rose.


Image


This makes a lot more sense. So, a financial motivation to enter into an untenable business deal.

I do feel for those losing their jobs by the way. I suppose in reality, that’s probably one of the truly more saddening things about all this.
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KB Toys to Possibly Make a Return to US

Postby Va'al » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:52 am

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With the stories about Toys R Us dominating the news cycle for toy collectors and fans, something else seems to have made its appearance, sped up by the closure of the giraffe-shaped retail chain, and a name that North American Transformers fans might recognise: KB Toys.

Fellow Seibertronian Sabrblade pointed us towards an article on The Rock Father detailing the entire deal, but it all starts with Ellia Kassoff of Strategic Brands, LLC, posting on LinkedIn about their plans to resurrect KB Toys, and how the TRU closure has affected all this.

we have now accelerated our business plan and hope to have our stores up and running before Christmas. We're in discussions with many of the toy manufactures, as we try to find out the best way to support them and the 20% loss of the US toy market due to the Toys R Us liquidation.


Additionally, Kassoff later posted another message, highlighting their current priorities in terms of the over 30000 people who are losing their current jobs at Toys R Us, along with any other specialist in the toy industry (manufacturer, distributor, retailer, etc) who may be interested in joining the initiative to, as they put it, 'save the toy industry'.

The action is bold, and as Zahn points out in the article on The Rock Father, there are both good pointers and potential hurdles in the whole deal, including the cause of KB's downfall in the first place being the same as TRU's this time round:

Strategic Marks did indeed file for a trademark on the name "KB Toys" back in 2016. What's interesting here is that the original KB Toys fell victim to the same vultures at Bain Capital, who loaded that company with debt and killed it in the same way that they've destroyed Toys "R" Us. Then, in 2009, Toys "R" Us acquired the KB portfolio of trademarks from Streambank, LLC for just over $2M, taking over the domain names and later using the KB Toys name on a series of budget-priced, house-branded toys and games (they were crap) labeled as K•B Classics. Along the way, KB had many variations of their name, including K•B Toys, K•B Toys Outlet, K•B Toy Works and Kay-Bee Toys. It will be interesting to see if Toys "R" Us still considers any of those to be assets in their liquidation, as I was able to find that KBToys.com, KBToyWorks.com and KBKids.com (which once had a $43M push behind it) are all still owned by Toys "R" Us and pointed to the TRU.com server (although unresponsive)


That said, what do you make of this? Is it a positive update in the Toys r Us debacle? Is it something that might interest you to follow through? Join the conversation in the Energon Pub, and share your thoughts!
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby spiderbob007 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:22 am

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Every company that Bain Capital touches seems to go bankrupt.

Two stories of Bain's money management skills:
http://nyp.st/2pgWNyJ
http://nyp.st/2xUP53Y
Last edited by spiderbob007 on Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Galactic Prime » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:27 am

North American Transformers fans? KB Toys never existed in Canada or Mexico.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Cyber Bishop » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:28 am

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spiderbob007 wrote:Every company that Bain Capital touches seems to go bankrupt.

Yup, Clearchannel and I heart radio both bent belly up after they bough them. They have the death touch.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Kyleor » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:14 am

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I doubt it would happen, but it would be kind of awesome if KB Toys came back, went into former Toys R Us locations where feasible, and hired on former Toys R Us employees (store only, no corporate) where possible.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby o.supreme » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:38 am

Motto: "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"
This is interesting...I remember KB toys website for a while would redirect to Toys R Us. It would be interesting if they came back. However I don't think they could support stores the size of TRU. Having smaller stores in shopping malls would evoke that nostalgia, and actually give me a reason to go to malls again (no toy store, no book stores, no media stores...) basically no reason for me to go to the mall in about a decade, except for a discount theater experience LOL....
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby kurthy » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:55 am

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This is awesome! :DANCE: I loved KB much more than TRU. It was my one and only reason to go to the mall with my sisters when I was a little kid.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby griftimus prime » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:55 am

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i would like more updates on this. its very unlikely but could be cool. also i did not know kb still existed.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby SW's SilverHammer » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:48 am

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Cyber Bishop wrote:
spiderbob007 wrote:Every company that Bain Capital touches seems to go bankrupt.

Yup, Clearchannel and I heart radio both bent belly up after they bough them. They have the death touch.

Not to get to technical, but Bain capitol isn't a management firm. It's private equities. What they do is take out massive loans, buy companies then slash payroll and cut costs. It makes the business look profitable in the short term so they can take out more loans in the businesses name, pay off their original debts, then sell the company for a greater profit. It's not structural management, its money management.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Megatron Wolf » Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:03 pm

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This would be awesome especially if they take over all the TRU spots. KB was my main toy store when i was a kid even after TRU showed up, would be great to see them come back. Just hope they dont take over where they left off, near the end they were worse than TRU is right now. Stll sad to see TRU go but if this goes through itll soften the blow alot.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby kurthy » Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:23 pm

Motto: "Illumination through acceleration!"
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FTFY,
What they do is take out massive loans, buy companies then slash payroll and cut costs. It makes the business look profitable in the short term so they can take out more loans in the businesses name, pay off their original debts, then let the company go bankrupt after they've squeezed them for those loans and profits.

They only try to sell the company if they still survive after all that. Also, Bain Capital's "intent" is to use the Bain& Company's management consultancy techniques to streamline the operations, so while they are a capital investment firm, they also apply B&C consultancy, which often leads to bankruptcy. If you want to mince words fine, but BC squeezed TRU dry like a number of other companies.


SW's SilverHammer wrote:
Cyber Bishop wrote:
spiderbob007 wrote:Every company that Bain Capital touches seems to go bankrupt.

Yup, Clearchannel and I heart radio both bent belly up after they bough them. They have the death touch.

Not to get to technical, but Bain capitol isn't a management firm. It's private equities. What they do is take out massive loans, buy companies then slash payroll and cut costs. It makes the business look profitable in the short term so they can take out more loans in the businesses name, pay off their original debts, then sell the company for a greater profit. It's not structural management, its money management.
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Re: KB Toys to Possibly Make a Return to US

Postby tmthor » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:17 pm

Va'al wrote:With the stories about Toys R Us dominating the news cycle for toy collectors and fans, something else seems to have made its appearance, sped up by the closure of the giraffe-shaped retail chain, and a name that North American Transformers fans might recognise: KB Toys.

Fellow Seibertronian Sabrblade pointed us towards an article on The Rock Father detailing the entire deal, but it all starts with Ellia Kassoff of Strategic Brands, LLC, posting on LinkedIn about their plans to resurrect KB Toys, and how the TRU closure has affected all this.

we have now accelerated our business plan and hope to have our stores up and running before Christmas. We're in discussions with many of the toy manufactures, as we try to find out the best way to support them and the 20% loss of the US toy market due to the Toys R Us liquidation.


Additionally, Kassoff later posted another message, highlighting their current priorities in terms of the over 30000 people who are losing their current jobs at Toys R Us, along with any other specialist in the toy industry (manufacturer, distributor, retailer, etc) who may be interested in joining the initiative to, as they put it, 'save the toy industry'.

The action is bold, and as Zahn points out in the article on The Rock Father, there are both good pointers and potential hurdles in the whole deal, including the cause of KB's downfall in the first place being the same as TRU's this time round:

Strategic Marks did indeed file for a trademark on the name "KB Toys" back in 2016. What's interesting here is that the original KB Toys fell victim to the same vultures at Bain Capital, who loaded that company with debt and killed it in the same way that they've destroyed Toys "R" Us. Then, in 2009, Toys "R" Us acquired the KB portfolio of trademarks from Streambank, LLC for just over $2M, taking over the domain names and later using the KB Toys name on a series of budget-priced, house-branded toys and games (they were crap) labeled as K•B Classics. Along the way, KB had many variations of their name, including K•B Toys, K•B Toys Outlet, K•B Toy Works and Kay-Bee Toys. It will be interesting to see if Toys "R" Us still considers any of those to be assets in their liquidation, as I was able to find that KBToys.com, KBToyWorks.com and KBKids.com (which once had a $43M push behind it) are all still owned by Toys "R" Us and pointed to the TRU.com server (although unresponsive)


That said, what do you make of this? Is it a positive update in the Toys r Us debacle? Is it something that might interest you to follow through? Join the conversation in the Energon Pub, and share your thoughts!


Not to bust everyone's bubble but all of you that did not shop at Tru are not going to shop at the new KB why do you ask?.....because Walmart Target and Amazon will still be cheaper. They are not going to be able to compete right of the bat. The problem is Walmart and Target and Amazon are too big...the stiffle competition and yes their buying power is far beyond that of any smaller retailers. Not saying if done right the new KB will fail..just saying that at least in the beginning they will have the same prices if not higher than Tru had. Also on the radio (I have not looked up anything to check the validity of the story) but on the radio they said there Amazon is looking into buying a bunch of the Tru inventory and possibly some of the stores (the ones that are owned by Tru not leased that might be distribution warehouses idk) but the guy reported that might disrupt the Canadian stores deal. He also reported that many parties are interested in the name trademark and the online site. So this might become a big mess as far as the Canadian stores sales go...the might have to change the name if another party buys the name "toys r us"

Another thing that was discussed was that we are seeing the end of the specialty stores (big chain stores not mom and pop ones) they listed many stores that sales figures have forecasted will have troubles they named the following Best Buy, GameStop, Claire's, Barnes & nobel & FYE. They gave a multitude of reasons but the biggest one is....you can one stop shop at Walmart and Target...and get the best price in many cases...and that's what people are doing if not there Amazon...they one reporter laughed and said most likely Walmart will fear Amazon some day the way other retailers fear Walmart now.

Edit
Found the Amazon story they might be referencing look up bloomberg.com
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby fenrir72 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:55 pm

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Concerning TRU and the KB story, read what happened to Kenny Rogers Roasted Chicken franchise! It was a juggernaut back in the 80s but eventually bit the dust.................only one branch in California left iirc. A Malaysian Chinese company eventually bought the name and still continues to exist in SEA.

Same thing wmight happen to TRU. Some Chinese money bags investor/s might buy the name and continue on in Asia (especially China). Doing business in the mainland USA ain't profitable anymore (unless those Chinese investors will learn their lessons from the cluster frack deal they got with Paramount Pictures....cough cough AoE and TLK and GitS :lol: ) and won't tough the brand with a 10 foot pole. :-?
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Btw, its been nearly a year now and TR Soundwave and Blaster aren't moving in the shelve of TRU, is that shelfwarming or what?


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Toys R Us reveals closing dates and liquidating stores

Postby WreckerJack » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:37 pm

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We have more news regarding Toys R Us going out of business. A quick thanks to Emerje for bringing this to our attention. This news comes to us from Business Insider. Toys R Us is planning to close all of it's stores and liquidate all of it's items. Toys R Us has notified employees that stores and warehouses will be shutting down by May 14th. According to employees, liquidation sales will start Thursday of this week so keep a look out. There is still time for one last visit. If you feel nostalgic you may want to read our editorial, Remembering Toys R Us.

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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby EunuchRon » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:40 pm

Motto: "That which does not kill us sure leaves a mark."
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"One shall stand, one shall fall".
KB stands when TRU falls? If that happens, just weird, man. Weird. :BOT: :CON:
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby william-james88 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:02 pm

EunuchRon wrote:"One shall stand, one shall fall".
KB stands when TRU falls? If that happens, just weird, man. Weird. :BOT: :CON:

You know what else is weird? KB Toys still exists as an actual e-bay store... and they sell TRU exclusives

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Chubby-Puppies ... 3332253655
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby EunuchRon » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:18 pm

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Heavy... :shock:
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby WreckerJack » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:11 pm

Motto: "The complain train is leaving the station."
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Got a text from a buddy saying that TRU doesn't to website orders to in store pickup. (you can still order from their site just not in store pickups) Did a check and sure enough I do not see that feature. Looks like their free shipping benchmark went up to 99$ for whatever reason.

Also heard from another person that grocery stores are cutting up TRU giftcards as they are being recalled. If you have any TRU giftcards or credit, use them up ASAP. Claim what is rightfully yours before it's too late.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby fenrir72 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:33 pm

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https://www.foxbusiness.com/features/if ... p=obinsite

"Many are speculating that Toys “R” Us liquidation plans to shutter all of its U.S. stores is imminent after the toy giant announced plans to close all of its UK stores on Wednesday.

The retailer has been struggling to keep afloat after a lackluster holiday season and failing to find a buyer to help the toy giant out of its massive piles of debt. But as with any retailer’s demise, many industry insiders are already weighing in on who could potentially capitalize off the toy giant’s death.

Although the likely winners will be Amazon, Walmart and Target, leading toy expert and CEO of TTPM.com Jim Silver says other big retail chains have already started to add more toys.

“Best Buy is expanding their toy selection. Party City is adding more toys. FAO is reopening. Kohl’s and JC Penney will carry more toys,” Silver tells FOX Business, adding that he also expects smaller specialty chains to expand as a result.

Another possibility, adds Silver, is that one of the larger international toy chains such as UK- based Smyths Toys could now be looking to target the U.S.

Gerrick Johnson, a toy analyst for BMO Capital Markets, says if liquidation happens, the move will most likely only affect smaller toy companies, and giants like Mattel and Hasbro will likely gain market share because of their scale—eventually.

“It will be harder for new products to emerge and for untested concepts to be tried out,” Johnson tells FOX Business. “So there will be disruption in the near term if these stores liquidate.”

Many big toy makers, he says, will likely struggle this year as Toys “R” Us shutters 180 store locations across the country over the next two months because of the steep discounts it’s currently offering on toys.

“These goods are 20% to 70% off. And that sell-through won't generate reorders. So the first half, and potentially the full year, will be difficult for toy companies because of this,” Johnson says.

A representative for Toys “R” Us declined to comment to FOX Business in regards to the possible liquidation.

Toys “R” Us has been struggling for several months now. In September, just before the holiday season, the company filed for bankruptcy protection as its sales have been waning and debt was piling up. Then in late January, the retailer announced its plans to shutter roughly 180 stores across the country, wiping out one-fifth of its U.S. store fleet."


https://nypost.com/2018/03/14/toys-r-us ... res-alive/

" Geoffrey the giraffe may be close to extinction — but he ain’t dead yet.

Toys ‘R’ Us is in talks to save the chain from total liquidation, The Post has learned.

As the embattled retailer braces for a bankruptcy court filing on Thursday that would begin an orderly shutdown of the 70-year-old company, investors are weighing the possibility of salvaging a downsized version of the 800-store chain, sources said.

It’s not clear how many stores could be saved."


https://nypost.com/2018/03/15/toys-r-us ... ed-wounds/

"Toys R Us said Thursday it was giving up its fight to stay alive, and that it was killed by vendors that failed to support the 70-year-old chain, by rivals whose predatory prices created a long string of losses and by the media focus on its travails.

Chief executive David Brandon ticked off a long list of suspects, including Target, Walmart and Amazon.

But a look at the actions and inactions of the once-mighty chain reveals the long-troubled retailer wasn’t murdered — it committed suicide."
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"Shelfwarming"
Btw, its been nearly a year now and TR Soundwave and Blaster aren't moving in the shelve of TRU, is that shelfwarming or what?


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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby MegaX Master » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:50 pm

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I'm leaving to a city (180 miles from where I live, theres no TRU here) on Thursday night, so sales will be ready right when I get there. As for TRU and it's end, I don't feel all that bad about it. Prices are ridiculous compared to Walmart and Target (no wonder why TRU has lost to them) and the managment is garbage. I only have a few memories of Toys R Us that were special, like going in 2010 and looking at Leader Starscream or when DOTM cyberverse Optimus Prime came out as the exclusive preview toy. Oh well, I guess I better get ready for the end. K-B relaunch, here I come!
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Re: KB Toys to Possibly Make a Return to US

Postby lakebot » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:39 pm

tmthor wrote:Not to bust everyone's bubble but all of you that did not shop at Tru are not going to shop at the new KB why do you ask?.....because Walmart Target and Amazon will still be cheaper. They are not going to be able to compete right of the bat. The problem is Walmart and Target and Amazon are too big...the stiffle competition and yes their buying power is far beyond that of any smaller retailers. Not saying if done right the new KB will fail..just saying that at least in the beginning they will have the same prices if not higher than Tru had. Also on the radio (I have not looked up anything to check the validity of the story) but on the radio they said there Amazon is looking into buying a bunch of the Tru inventory and possibly some of the stores (the ones that are owned by Tru not leased that might be distribution warehouses idk) but the guy reported that might disrupt the Canadian stores deal. He also reported that many parties are interested in the name trademark and the online site. So this might become a big mess as far as the Canadian stores sales go...the might have to change the name if another party buys the name "toys r us"

Another thing that was discussed was that we are seeing the end of the specialty stores (big chain stores not mom and pop ones) they listed many stores that sales figures have forecasted will have troubles they named the following Best Buy, GameStop, Claire's, Barnes & nobel & FYE. They gave a multitude of reasons but the biggest one is....you can one stop shop at Walmart and Target...and get the best price in many cases...and that's what people are doing if not there Amazon...they one reporter laughed and said most likely Walmart will fear Amazon some day the way other retailers fear Walmart now.

Edit
Found the Amazon story they might be referencing look up bloomberg.com


I am seeing a lot of people indicating they feel Walmart, Target, and Amazon are better options or at least the options people will be using. While I must agree I personally use them for various purchases, including toys and transformers in particular, they are not always the best option and I think people are overlooking that. It’s already been mentioned that TRU did/was/was supposed to carry items you either couldn’t get from those locations or at least not in store. If KB comes back I don’t see this being any different and as I recall, until their last days, their toy selection was far superior to that of Walmart or Target. I do not consider Amazon for hardly any purchases(but I’ll get to that later). Prices may be higher but selection is what I’m after. And any toy or specialty store has to know they have to offer something different or more than other non-specialty shops due to the fact that they are, indeed, a specialty shop. Otherwise, why even open?

As for Amazon, I see Amazon as a thorn in the side of many businesses but I don’t feel I can safely order things online consistently. Or on eBay. I’ve repeated that many times before so I do apologize but from books to dvd’s/Blue Ray to toys, I’d say at least 10 times in the last month something has come damaged. If you’re buying older things, it can’t be helped but to buy online, unless you have limitless time to spend going from shop to shop. So it’s a necessary evil. Not one I want to be forced into for new products. Especially for the exact items that shipping can and does cause damage to. I cringe every time I place an online order because for the convenience, I sacrifice in other areas. Save money on an item, it comes damaged, send it back, play the waiting game for a refund, try again. Maybe I’m reading to much into it but it appears people prefer to sacrifice safely obtaining the item to save money?
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Z3ROhour » Tue Mar 20, 2018 4:08 am

Motto: ""I WILL CUDDLE YOUR SOUL!!""
Weapon: Three-Bladed Knife
and we stumble
one more
creaking step
towards the dystopiac,
chaos,
death-heat
that lies there
- waiting for us all -
in the salted desert plains
of an apocalypse
we dreamed,
saw &
failed.

*sigh*
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Shiroi Haze » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:32 pm

I managed to snag a Thundercracker two days ago. They don't have them on shelves but they have them in the back. I had to ask an employee for him to grab one from the storage. He also said there are no more street dates since it wouldn't matter anymore. :-(
Really sad about this... Thundercracker will be my last figure that I got from toys r us.
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Re: The ToysRUs Troubles Thread

Postby Z3ROhour » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:00 am

Motto: ""I WILL CUDDLE YOUR SOUL!!""
Weapon: Three-Bladed Knife
WreckerJack wrote:I won't be having any kids. My toys are for ME! :-D

HERE, HERE!
zodconvoy wrote:
"DOES HE NOT HAVE FEET TO STOMP?!?!? NOR TEETH TO GNASH!?!?
A DINOBOT IS NEVER WITHOUT HIS WEAPONS!"
Image
Latest FIGS (05/19 -07/19): UT TROLL! SIEGE IRONHIDE! MMC TURBEN & BOVIS! KBB MP10V & White CORE FIGHTER! ACE DESIGN Hiccups! Beelzeboss Iron Lady Custom Kit!NONNEF SIDESWIPE & HOUND UPGRADE SETS!
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