Billionaires don’t like the word “no”. It’s the same for MGA Entertainment’s CEO Isaac Larian who really wants to buy about 200 US stores of Toys R Us. His first bid was rejected, but he isn’t deterred. In fact, he’s already working on another bid.
Larian told CNNMoney he and his partners have all the financing they need. “It’s now a matter of determining how much more we are able to bid”, he says.
Earlier he offered $675 million for 274 US-based Toys R Us stores. The company rejected the bid as it wasn’t enough. Now Larian says he can offer a bit more since his offer for the Canadian Toys R Us stores was just 10% below the winning bid.
According to Larian, saving the 274 stores and the headquarters will save between 7000 to 10 000 jobs. If these stores shut down, the losses will also reflect many companies and toy makers. They will have to scale down operations which will also cost jobs, Larian says.
There are already such effect. Hasbro posted a big drop in sales and the company says it’s mostly because of Toys R Us liquidation. MGA Entertainment is also hurting along with other vendors, Larian says.
“I’m an optimist. I think things are going to work out,” he said. “The people handling the sale, I think they’re genuinely trying to save the stores here in the US. It’s going to be awkward if Toys “R” Us Canada is saved, if it is saved in central Europe and Asia, and but the market where it started goes into liquidation.”
So far Toys R Us aren’t commenting on the new developments. The company continues to shut down stores as per the original plan. Larian says that even if all the stores close, it’s not a problem to reopen them if he wins the bid. Still, he would prefer to get the deal before all stores close down.