King Jouet has acquired 117 stores of its competitor Maxi Toys through its owner, the Gueydon family. The French toy store chain adds twenty stores to its Belgian network, currently consisting of one store near Brussels.
Two thirds saved
"117 stores and 826 jobs saved", Maxi Toys CEO Alain Hellebaut proudly announced in a press release. His toy store chain had to ask for protection against creditors last May, but has found a way out of its difficult situation. The Gueydon family takes over two thirds of Maxi Toys' stores: 20 of the 26 Belgian stores, 95 of the 129 French stores and two City stores in France. 826 jobs are saved of the current 1,200. The current warehouse in La Louvière, near Mons, is also saved.
The current CEO will keep his position after the takeover, and the chains will be keeping a separate brand image. "I look forward to working with King Jouet", Hellebaut therefore adds. "Our brand was in difficulties, but has now found a solid base". He vows though that he "will not forget" those who will lose their jobs.
The acquisition enables Maxi Toys to prepare for the important holiday season to come, as well as to digitise further - which is one of King Jouet's main strengths. Together, both chains have almost 350 stores and a joint turnover of 400 million euros.