The Real Deal New York

Despite failed crowdfunding effort, billionaire continuing with Toys “R” Us bid

"Toys ‘R’ Us is important for the whole, goddamn toy industry."
April 14, 2018 05:32PM

From back: Toys “R” Us, MGA Entertainment founder Issac Larian. (Credit: imgflip, Getty Images, Mike Mozart_

Who wouldn’t donate to a billionaire’s GoFundMe campaign to save a bankrupt toy retailer? Most people, evidently, but the poor response to Isaac Larian’s crowdfunding campaign — it was supposed to bring in $1 billion and only raised $59,000 so far — is not slowing him down.

Larian, the founder of MGA Entertainment which makes toys like Bratz dolls, told the Wall Street Journal he’s offered $675 million for Toy “R” Us‘ American stores and further $215 million for the Canadian outlets. Though the crowdfunding campaign is slated to run until May 28, and Larian’s raised $200 million from traditional external investors, it seems that he’s willing to front the cash.

“I’m making a cash deposit today and have a letter from my banks that I have the funds to do this,” he told the Journal Friday. “Toys ‘R’ Us is important for the whole, goddamn toy industry.”

Larian’s bid may be viewed as tenuous for the viability of the retailer as MGA is considered a competitor to many of the other toy makers whose products would be stocked on the shelves. Larian says he would not be involved in the rehabilitated Toys “R” Us’ operations.

Though offers over $1 billion have been received for the bankrupt retailer’s Asian business, it’s unknown whether other parties are interested in its North American assets. [WSJ]Erin Hudson