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FAO Schwarz is making a comeback

FAO Schwarz is coming back.The toy store is opening new locations, including a new flagship in New Yo...

Posted: Oct 9, 2018 10:55 PM
Updated: Oct 9, 2018 10:55 PM

FAO Schwarz is coming back.

The toy store is opening new locations, including a new flagship in New York in November.

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FAO Schwarz was famous for its Fifth Avenue store, where Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia performed "Heart and Soul" and "Chopsticks" on the floor piano in "Big." It closed the Fifth Avenue location in 2015.

Consumer products company ThreeSixty Group, which also owns Sharper Image, acquired FAO from Toys "R" Us in 2016.

Under its new owner, FAO plans to open airport stores, including at New York's LaGuardia Airport, and in Canada. It has also started selling inside Kohl's.

But its new 20,000-square-foot store at 30 Rockefeller Center in midtown Manhattan will be the company's top priority. The Wall Street Journal first reported the plans in August.

The store will be staffed with product demonstrators, magicians, and costumed actors as well as sales clerks, the Journal reported.

"Everything we are doing revolves around 30 Rock...That's the anchor," David Conn, CEO of ThreeSixty Brands, told CNBC on Tuesday.

Bob Phibbs, chief executive of New York-based consultancy the Retail Doctor, believes FAO's plan is flawed.

"Instead of developing a strategy that reaches younger shoppers, FAO Schwarz has chosen to tap into '80s nostalgia by featuring in-store spectacles. It's outdated and doesn't show a fundamental understanding of their customers," he said.

FAO will face tough competition from big retailers that have expanded their toy selections in recent months to fill the void left by Toys "R" Us' bankruptcy.

Target (TGT), which reported double-digit toy sales growth last quarter compared to a year ago, has been buying up extra toys.

"Given the strong affinity between families with young children and our brand, both toys and [baby] are key categories for us," Target CEO Brian Cornell told analysts in August. Toys "R" Us closures created "unique opportunities" to drive traffic and capture market share for Target, he said.

Walmart (WMT) has announced plans to increase its new toy selection in all stores by 30% and expand its website assortment by 40%.

It is bringing hundreds of exclusive brands to aisles and holding in-store toy demos. Walmart is also partnering with Ryan, a first-grade YouTube star, on "Ryan's World" — a line of toys he created.

Amazon (AMZN) is making a heavy push on toys, too.

"Amazon is gearing up to take disproportionate share this holiday season," Jefferies analyst Stephanie Wissink said in a report.

And FAO also isn't the only dead toy store brand attempting to revive itself.

Toys "R" Us said in a court filing last week that it is considering "a new, operating Toys 'R' Us and Babies 'R' Us branding company."

The plan would "create new, domestic, retail operating businesses under the Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us names, as well as expand its international presence and further develop its private brands business."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313942

Reported Deaths: 7240
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21580258
Hinds20330415
Harrison17879309
Rankin13594278
Jackson13429246
Madison10088217
Lee9970174
Jones8370163
Forrest7670152
Lauderdale7188241
Lowndes6387146
Lamar622486
Lafayette6184118
Washington5332133
Bolivar4801132
Oktibbeha462198
Panola4582106
Pearl River4506146
Marshall4435103
Warren4386121
Pontotoc420172
Monroe4107133
Union410076
Neshoba4030176
Lincoln3962110
Hancock378486
Leflore3493125
Sunflower335990
Tate333384
Pike3316105
Scott315773
Alcorn312768
Yazoo311469
Itawamba299777
Copiah296865
Coahoma295179
Simpson294988
Tippah288168
Prentiss279760
Adams278782
Marion269080
Leake267473
Wayne262641
Grenada261386
Covington258281
George247848
Newton246261
Winston227081
Tishomingo226667
Jasper221048
Attala214273
Chickasaw207757
Holmes188873
Clay185254
Stone182433
Tallahatchie178541
Clarke177980
Calhoun170532
Yalobusha164238
Smith162334
Walthall133945
Greene130533
Lawrence128524
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123042
Carroll121828
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107033
Tunica105226
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
Humphreys96533
Kemper95728
Franklin83623
Quitman80716
Choctaw76318
Wilkinson67230
Jefferson65528
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 531404

Reported Deaths: 10985
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson765501522
Mobile41036805
Madison34789503
Tuscaloosa25788453
Montgomery24340589
Shelby23449249
Baldwin21154308
Lee15882171
Calhoun14511314
Morgan14306279
Etowah13843353
Marshall12232223
Houston10570281
Elmore10068205
Limestone9974151
Cullman9676194
St. Clair9661243
Lauderdale9427241
DeKalb8831186
Talladega8227176
Walker7241277
Autauga6926108
Jackson6814112
Blount6678137
Colbert6306134
Coffee5519119
Dale4838111
Russell441538
Chilton4296112
Franklin426082
Covington4129118
Tallapoosa4023152
Escambia393677
Chambers3573123
Dallas3551152
Clarke351161
Marion3122101
Pike310977
Lawrence300398
Winston274473
Bibb260964
Geneva250477
Marengo249564
Pickens234461
Barbour231057
Hale223077
Butler216069
Fayette212562
Henry188844
Cherokee185245
Randolph180542
Monroe177540
Washington167339
Macon159650
Clay156756
Crenshaw152557
Cleburne148941
Lamar142535
Lowndes138853
Wilcox127130
Bullock122841
Conecuh110529
Perry107726
Coosa107628
Sumter104732
Greene92534
Choctaw60724
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