Toys R Us is now using Amazon to power its ecommerce operations as it quietly ends its partnership with rival Target.
Ahead of the holiday season last year, the recently resurrected Toys R Us announced a new partnership with Target to power its ecommerce operations.
Under the tie-up, customers purchasing products on the recently launched ToysRUs.com had the option to “buy now at Target.com”, where they were redirected to Target’s website to complete their purchase.
It has now quietly ended its partnership with Target, and its website now redirects shoppers to Amazon.
Toys R Us’ initial demise was in no small part due to Amazon and although it now has an entirely different business model and ownership, the toy retailer still bears scars from the pairs’ historic relationship.
In 2000, Toys R Us signed a 10-year contract with Amazon to be its sole supplier of toys, in an effort to capitalise on the emerging online market.
Amazon broke the terms of the contract and allowed other companies to sell toys on its marketplace. It said that Toys R Us didn’t supply a broad enough range of toys, including many of the leading ranges.
Toys R Us sued Amazon for reneging on its initial agreement in 2006, successfully winning $51 million in damages by 2009. Despite the significant payout, it initially claimed almost double this amount.
The toy retailer now operates a “Retail as a Service” platform enabling brands who sell in store to actively manage their instore experiences and analyse how their in-store experience translate to online sales.
This new model sees “the hottest toy products and brands” pay a subscription to Toys R Us to include their products and “immersive”, “highly interactive” experiences instore, but will take 100 per cent of the revenue.