aNb Media News, May 19, 2015

FAO’s New York City Location to Close

Toys “R” Us announced that its FAO Schwarz Fifth Avenue location in New York City will close its doors on July 15, 2015. Toys “R” Us issued the following statement about FAO’s flagship closure: “For the past several years, Toys “R” Us has been reviewing its lease renewal options for the FAO Schwarz Fifth Avenue location and one of these options was to not renew the lease agreement, which the company has decided to do. In working with the property owner, the company was able to agree on an early exit in advance of the 2017 lease expiration, providing the opportunity to realize meaningful rent savings. As a result, we plan to formally close the Fifth Avenue location on Wednesday, July 15. The decision to vacate this space is due to the continuing rising costs of operating a retail location on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The company is committed to the FAO Schwarz brand and growing its legacy. In fact, it is actively searching for another location in midtown Manhattan where FAO Schwarz can welcome shoppers from around the world. The company is working diligently to place as many full- and part-time team members as possible at Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us locations in the greater New York/New Jersey area.”

FAO Schwarz opened its doors in New York City in 1862 and has been in various locations throughout the city over the years. FAO moved to the current Fifth Avenue location in 1986. TRU acquired FAO in 2009.

ToyFest West Revises 2016 Dates

In response to a 2015 post-show survey, exhibitors and attendees of ToyFest West 2015 asked for a revision of 2016 dates saying that all involved are able to conduct business in three full days. As a result, the fourth day of the show, which was to be half day of business has been dropped for 2016, according to the Western Toy and Hobby Representatives Association (WTHRA), the organization that produces the show.

The WTHRA board voted on May 6, 2015, to adopt the following revised schedule for ToyFest West 2016 at the South Point Hotel Casino & Spa in Las Vegas, Nevada:

Sunday, March 6, 10am­–6pm

Monday, March 7, 9am­–6pm

Tuesday, March 8, 9am­–6pm

In addition, the annual gala will be moved to the last night of the show. The evening will include a banquet, Hall of Fame inductees, Retailer of the Year award, entertainment, and other exciting additions that will be announced at a later date. There is now a Game Night for retailers scheduled for Sunday evening.

“Our goal is to continue to grow ToyFest West by supporting our attendees and responding to their needs and concerns,” said Bill St. John, president of WTHRA. “Three full days will give everyone time to complete their business and socialize with their peers while respecting this busy time of year. We are excited about the changes for 2016 and look forward to seeing everyone in Las Vegas next March.”

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