Toys R Us is airfreighting tens of thousands of fidget spinners and cubes to stores to meet demand.
Toys R Us has, perhaps, jumped on the spinner bandwagon a little late, only receiving its first shipments for its US stores last week. The toy retailer said it wanted to take its time to find the right partner. The chain plans to make up for lost time by tapping into bigger trends around collectibles and tactile toys.
Richard Barry, Toys R Us executive vice president and chief merchandising officer, commented: “They’re pretty much evaporating the minute they get on shelves.”
This summer, Toys R Us will stock DC Comics and Marvel-themed spinners, along with exclusive light-up, metallic and glow-in-the-dark versions. The retailer hopes the variety of spinners will drive collectibility. “You won’t want to have just one, you’ll want all your favorite characters,” Richard said.
Collectibles — including trading cards, figurines, dolls, action figures and blind packs — were a big contributor to the toy industry’s growth last year, according to market research firm NPD Group. Sales, up 33%, hit $1.8 billion USD, or about 9 percent of total toy industry dollars.
Toys R Us noticed an uptick in sales of Rubik’s Cubes and yo-yos late last year, around the same time it started keeping an eye on fidget toys.
“We think the overall fidget trend can be very sustainable,” Richard commented. “The lifecycle for any one product could be long or short, and only time can tell, but other products will come in and we think it will last at least the year.”