It is going to be extremely difficult for Toys R Us to keep pace with F.A.O. Schwarz, particularly if it comes down to a fight over whether a retailer will choose to feature an F.A.O. Schwarz or a Toys R Us shop within their store.
F.A.O. Schwarz and its parent company, ThreeSixtyBrands, is moving fast and moving big in order to make sure that they have an impact this Christmas season.
According to a CNBC article by Lauren Thomas, the retailer is opening stores all over the world and doing it quickly. The article, "FAO Schwarz makes international push and plans return to New York ahead of first Christmas without Toys R Us", gives a country by country breakdown which I have summarized below:
Hudsons Bay – Ninety, 1000 square foot stores within a store.
Kidsland (China's largest toy retailer) – Two very large stores, one in Beijing and one in Shanghai.
Selfridges – Two of its stores will have F.A.O.pop-up stores for this holiday season.
El Corte Ingles – One pop-up store in Madrid.
Myer – Two pop-up shops, one in Sydney and one in Melbourne.
And let's not forget the…
Kohl's – 1158 stores within a store.
A 20,000 square foot store in Rockefeller next to the skating rink plus airport shops.
Here is what I think:
F.A.O. Schwarz owner, ThreeSixtyBrands knows that it has a limited amount of time to get out in front of Toys R Us and is running as fast as it can.It is going to be extremely difficult for Toys R Us to keep pace with F.A.O. Schwarz, particularly if it comes down to a fight over whether a retailer will choose to feature an F.A.O. Schwarz or a Toys R Us shop within their store.
All of this is exciting news for the toy industry as new shoots of grass appear to be popping up everywhere.