Funtastic Limited (ASX: FUN) today announced plans to change its name to Toys“R”Us ANZ Limited, reflecting the company’s significant transformation to a digital-first retail focus and accelerated growth trajectory.
Plans also include an update to the company’s ASX ticker symbol to TOY, subject to the necessary approvals.
The change in corporate identity follows the successful acquisition of the Hobby Warehouse Group in November 2020, which includes e-commerce businesses Toys“R”Us, Babies“R”Us, Hobby Warehouse and IT distributor Mittoni Pty Ltd.
The Group is the exclusive Australian and New Zealand licensee for the Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us brands through a long-term licence agreement with the global brand owner, TRU Kids Inc. in the US.
The change in corporate identity reflects the transformation of the company increasingly into a direct-to-consumer retailer of toy, baby, and hobby lifestyle products with a digital-first retail focus.
The company reported a 14.9% lift in revenue for the half year to 31 January 2021 to $16.2 million and a 465 per cent rise in net profit, however this result only accounted for contributions from the Hobby Warehouse Group from 26November 2020 to 31 January 2021.
Babies“R”Us is set to relaunch in Australia with thousands of products at the end of this financial year initially as an e-commerce destination, growing to an enhanced offering during the second half of 2021 in what the company considers to be an under-represented retail category.
Following acquisition of the Hobby Warehouse Group, the company commenced a review of operations which included a restructure to its product portfolio and activities, the sale of its confectionery business, merging of staff/teams and a reduction of several fixed operating costs targeted at reducing the ongoing cost of doing business.
In March, the company also announced initiatives to expand its logistics capabilities to meet anticipated peak demand capacity requirements in the short-term whilst providing scalability for future growth plans.
The company continues to review and implement changes aimed at reducing costs and building the foundations necessary to deliver on its growth projections.
The strength of the three shopper facing e-commerce pillars, Toys“R”Us, Babies“R”Us and Hobby Warehouse, will be enhanced in future financial periods with increased investment on brand awareness with the key objective of increasing growth and direct-to-consumer revenues.
For more than 70 years, Toys”R”Us has been the dominant global leader in the toy category celebrating the joys of childhood with kids of all ages, and Babies”R”Us has been the trusted destination for all new and expecting parents.
Geoffrey the Giraffe, the beloved mascot of Toys”R”Us for more than 50 years, is adored by millions of kids and their families around the world. This brand power remains as Toys”R”Us and Babies”R”Us generate more than US$2 billion in global retail sales annually through nearly 900 branded stores and e-commerce businesses in 25+ countries across North America, Asia, Africa, Australia, and the Middle East.
“Today’s announcement is a great testament to the strength of the Toys“R”Us brand. In just shy of two years, Toys“R”Us has become one of the fastest growing digital players in Australia,” said Yehuda Shmidman, Board Director of Toys“R”Us Global and Board Observer of Toys“R”Us ANZ.
“We look forward to continuing to work closely with Louis and his team to solidify Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us as the leading destination for toy and baby products in the region.”
Funtastic CEO, Louis Mittoni, said: “The change in our corporate identity to Toys”R”Us ANZ reflects our company’s evolving focus with a strong and confident brand. We are looking to accelerate growth with further expansion that includes the launch of Babies“R”Us and building state-of-the-art logistics capabilities.”
“We are excited to form an even closer relationship with the Toys“R”Us brand and global team, and whilst this marks an exciting change in the company’s history, it is just the beginning of our new chapter and trajectory.”
The corporate entity name change from Funtastic to Toys“R”Us ANZ is expected to be put to shareholders at a general meeting near the end of June and will be accompanied with updates to the company’s constitution and other proposals, subject to the necessary approvals from ASX and ASIC.
The corporate structure and operational aspects of the Group remain unchanged.
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