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Kb toys

The meaning of «kb toys»

K·B Toys (also known as Kay Bee Toys)[1] was an American chain of mall-based retail toy stores. The company was founded in 1922 as Kaufman Brothers, a wholesale candy store. The company opened a wholesale toy store in 1946, and ended its candy wholesales two years later to focus entirely on the toy industry. Retail sales began in the 1970s, under the name Kay-Bee Toy & Hobby.

In 1999, the company operated 1,324 stores across the United States and was the second-largest toy retailer in the U.S., but it later declared bankruptcy in both 2004 and 2008 before going out of business on February 9, 2009. The company operated 461 stores at the time of its closure. International retailer Toys "R" Us acquired the remains of K·B Toys, consisting mainly of its website, trademarks, and intellectual property rights.[2] Strategic Marks, a company that buys and revives defunct brands, purchased the brand in 2016, and planned to open new stores under the name beginning in 2019; plans for this revival, however, fell through due to a lack of funding.

Brothers Harry and Joseph Kaufman originally opened a wholesale candy store, Kaufman Brothers, in Pittsfield, Massachusetts on April 1, 1922.[1][3][4] During the 1940s, the brothers acquired a wholesale toy company from a candy client who owed them money for outstanding debts.[1][5] On September 21, 1946, Kaufman Brothers opened a wholesale toy store at 70 Columbus Avenue in Pittsfield, marking the company's entry into the wholesale toy industry.[6][7] In 1948, Kaufman Brothers Inc. ended its involvement in the candy business to focus entirely on the toy business, which was thriving by that time.[5][4]

In 1973, the company ended its toy wholesaling to become a shopping mall-based toy retailer known as Kay-Bee Toy & Hobby, with "Kay-Bee" named after the initials in "Kaufman Brothers". The company had 26 stores at the time.[5][8] In 1977, the company name changed to Kay-Bee Toy and Hobby Shops Inc.[5][9] By 1979, the company was based in Lee, Massachusetts. The company opened 40 new stores during that year, and stated that it was the nation's fastest-growing toy store chain, with 170 locations across the Midwestern and Eastern United States.[10]

In 1981, the Melville Corporation purchased the company from the Kaufman family for $64.2 million.[11][12] At the time, the company had 210 stores.[5] Richard Kaufman, the son of Harry Kaufman,[3] retired that year from his position as company president.[5] Donald Kaufman, Richard's brother, also once served as a vice president for the company.[3] In 1983, the bankrupt Wickes Companies, based in California, sold 37 of its 45 Toy World stores for $5.5 million to Kay-Bee Toy & Hobby, which took over the leases of the acquired stores.[13] As of 1990, the company advertised itself as "The Toy Store in the Mall."[14][15] That year, Melville Corporation purchased Circus World's 330 stores in 32 states for $95 million; the locations became part of the Kay-Bee division.[16][17] In 1991, Kay-Bee Toys purchased K&K Toys' 136 stores, located in 18 states; the stores were converted to Kay-Bee stores the following year.[18] During 1993 and 1994, as part of a major restructuring plan, Kay-Bee closed approximately 250 stores that had underperformed.[5]

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