A large sign greets shoppers saying that the Toys ‘R’ Us location is closing on Jan. 2, 2023 after several decades at Mayfair. The nearest Toys ‘R’ Us store will now be Nanaimo. (Chris Campbell/Black Press Media photo)

A large sign greets shoppers saying that the Toys ‘R’ Us location is closing on Jan. 2, 2023 after several decades at Mayfair. The nearest Toys ‘R’ Us store will now be Nanaimo. (Chris Campbell/Black Press Media photo)

‘Really sad’: Victoria’s biggest toy store closing forever

Toys ‘R’ Us shutting down in Mayfair Shopping Centre

For Lizzie Wilson, a parent, grandparent and auntie to dozens, saving money on toys is pretty crucial.

That’s why she’s sad at the news that the huge Toys ‘R’ Us store at Victoria’s Mayfair Shopping Centre is closing down forever.

A large sign greets shoppers saying that the Toys ‘R’ Us location is closing on Jan. 2, 2023 after several decades at Mayfair. The nearest Toys ‘R’ Us store will now be Nanaimo.

“It’s just really sad,” said Wilson, who was Christmas shopping on Monday morning at Mayfair. “Their prices are often better than other stores. Toys are really pricey in general so anything you can save makes a big difference for someone like me.”

Other shoppers said much of the same thing, saying that Toys ‘R’ Us and Walmart are usually cheaper than specialty toy stores.

The news shouldn’t be a shock to those who follow business news.

Toys ‘R’ Us has been a troubled company for many years, leading to Putman Investments saying in 2021 that it will purchase Toys ‘R’ Us and Babies ‘R’ Us Canada from affiliates of Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited

The Ancaster, Ont.-based investment company did not reveal the value or terms of the deal.

Toys ‘R’ Us and Babies ‘R’ Us Canada employs almost 5,000 people between its Vaughan, Ont. head office and 81 stores in 10 provinces.

Family-owned Putman Investments is run by Doug Putman, who owns Sunrise Records and Entertainment Limited and purchased HMV in 2019.

He purchased closed Davids Tea locations and began planning to open his own tea chain called T. Kettle.

Fairfax acquired Toys ‘R’ Us Canada in 2018 for $300 million as the company was filing for bankruptcy in the U.S.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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