Toy mogul Isaac Larian offers $890 million to buy Toys R Us stores in U.S., Canada

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Isaac Larian, the entrepreneur who made his fortune marketing best-selling toys such as the Bratz dolls, said Friday he has submitted a formal bid to buy Toys R Us stores in the United States and Canada in an effort to keep the iconic retail brand alive.

Larian has offered $675 million for 274 top-performing U.S. stores and $215 million for the Canadian operations of Toys R Us.

The U.S. bid includes the Wayne, N.J., headquarters of Toys R Us, but Larian said in a phone interview Friday that he has not yet decided if the headquarters will remain in  Wayne.

Larian said he and the other investors joining him in the offer believe the bids represent “a very fair valuation for the properties.” 

“We have put our best foot forward, and let’s see if they accept it or not,” he said. Larian and his group have given Toys R Us a six-day deadline to accept or reject the offer.

“The longer they wait, the lower the value of those assets will be,” he said.

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Toys R Us filed for bankruptcy in September and announced March 15 that it was shutting down its operations in the United States and liquidating its assets. Going out of business sales began at all U.S. stores on March 22. 

Any offer for the U.S. and Canadian operations is subject to the approval of the bankuptcy court. Larian’s bid could be denied if the court decides the value of Toys R Us real estate holdings, inventory and intellectual properties such as its trade name would be greater if sold separately.

Larian, chief executive of California-based MGA Entertainment Inc., a privately held toy and entertainment company, launched a crowd-funding campaign on March 22 to raise money to keep Toys R Us alive. For the past three weeks, Larian has been tweeting non-stop, urging other toy companies to join him in investing in Toys R Us. He has also been urging President Trump to take action to save the company.

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