Company of the Month April 2018: Smyths Toys – Toys R Us acquisition

Business, Company of the Month | Wed 2 May | Author – Business & Finance
Smyths Business & Finance Company of the Month April 2018

Last month’s news of Smyths’ acquisition of Toys R Us in Germany, Austria and Switzerland has come in the wake of the US firm filing for bankruptcy in September of last year.

Smyths Toys was founded in December 1986 in Claremorris, Co Mayo. It currently has 110 stores throughout Ireland and the UK. The toy provider has a rich history in Ireland, being at the forefront of children’s gifts and entertainment products for over 30 years.

Toys R Us acquisition

This deal will cost €79 million and add a further 90 stores, bringing the total to 200 outlets for Smyths across Ireland, the UK and Europe. As part of the purchase, the Toys R Us head office in Cologne will also be included.

In March, Toys R Us announced it would be liquidating its US business. The Smyths deal will require approval from a US court.

Impressive figures

Currently Smyths boasts group sales of €600 million and is amongst the largest toy retailers in Europe.

At the end of 2017, the company saw UK profits rise by 70%. In 2016, UK sales grew 19% from £334 million to £396.49 million (€447 million) thanks primarily to sales of superhero products, which were in high demand at the time.

The Toys R Us business is profitable, has a strong leadership team and already has many loyal customers. It provides a great starting point for our expansion. — Tony Smyth


Anthony, Padraig, Tommy and Liam Smyth, the four brothers from Galway, own Smyths. The largest stakes are held by Tony (27%) and Padraig (31%); Tommy and Liam both hold 18%.

Currently there are 21 stores in the Republic of Ireland, 7 in Northern Ireland and 83 in the UK. With the Toys R Us purchase more stores will be dotted across Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Business & Finance, Company of the Month

Business Person the MonthBusiness & Finance, in association with KPMG, recognises excellence in business through the ‘Company of the Month’ award. The Company of the Month award recognises the company which best demonstrates outstanding business leadership, sustainable growth, innovative strategy, strong financial returns and employee development.