LONDON — Toys “R” Us said on Wednesday that it would close all of its stores in Britain after failing to find a buyer, another ominous sign for a once-dominant toy retailer that has struggled under pressure from Amazon and other online sellers.
The company, which filed for bankruptcy in the United States last year, said it would close its remaining 75 stores in Britain in addition to the 25 it has already shut.
Toys “R” Us has also closed more than 100 stores in the United States in hopes of avoiding liquidation. The company, which is owned by the private equity firms Bain Capital and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, has been hampered by the debt load it was saddled with by the real estate firm Vornado Realty Trust, which bought Toys “R” Us in 2005.
The British arm of the toy seller went into administration, which is similar to a bankruptcy, in February. It had set a deadline of Wednesday to find a buyer for its remaining stores.
“We have made every effort to secure a buyer for all or part of the company’s business,” Simon Thomas, the joint administrator for the British arm, said in a news release. “This process attracted some interest, but ultimately no party has been able to move forward with a formal bid prior to the expiration of the stated deadline.”
The administrator said the company’s remaining 75 Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us stores would stay open to sell off existing stock, and that the process of closing them would take about six weeks.
About 67 people lost their jobs at the British arm’s headquarters on Wednesday, the administrator said. The company has about 2,500 employees in Britain.
The British arm of Toys “R” Us is the latest retailer to be forced to close or go into administration as changing consumer habits have pushed more purchases online.
Maplin, a seller of consumer electronics, collapsed into administration in February. BHS, a large department store fixture throughout Britain, went into administration and closed its stores in 2016.