Toys R Us to close all 800 stores across U.S.
Toys R Us on Wednesday announced that it will be closing -- or selling -- all 800 of its stores across the nation.
Like many children, Aaliyah Chase walked out of the Toys R Us store in Warwick with a smile.
"I like to buy dolls and cups and toys," she said.
It’s a store her dad also grew up going to.
"It was fun," her father said. "You wanted everything in the store."
And he’s not alone.
"Our parents didn’t want us to come here because we always had to come out of the store with something," Carolann Wilson, another shopper, said.
The Cobbs heard the news and immediately visited the store to get a gift for their grandson.
"I have grandchildren ages 9 months to 5 years old, and when they come to grandma and grandpa's house, that’s what they want to do. They want to go to Toys R Us," Monica Cobb said.
The Washington Post reported that as many as 33,000 jobs would potentially be impacted "as the company winds down its operations after six decades."
"It’s kind of a good time for employees when a company goes bankrupt because there’s so many help wanted signs," said Johnson & Wales University professor Tim Howes.
Toys R Us filed for bankruptcy in September. The Post noted that the company struggled to pay down nearly $8 billion in debt.
But there could also be a local impact.
Toys R Us makes up about 14 percent of sales in U.S. and Canada for Rhode Island-based Hasbro.
"Perhaps Hasbro will sell more items to places like Walmart, Target, Amazon, and other retailers," Howes said.
Though it’s not clear exactly what will happen or when, many are still left wondering where they’ll go to buy their favorite toys.
"It’s sad, but I kind of feel like that’s the way things are going. So, we have to get used to it," Wilson said.
NBC 10 News contacted Toys R Us for a statement about the possibility of a sale or store closures. but the company had no comment.
Customers are urged to use any gift cards as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, the future of all Babies R Us stores is unclear.