January 7, 2005, 12:00 AM

eToys Direct targets $100 million in first profitable year

The eToys brand is alive and well, having re-emerged as a toy retailer and services provider with expected first-year sales of $100 million. “We expect to be profitable this year,” eToys Direct CEO Mike Wagner says.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

 

The eToys brand is alive and well, having re-emerged as a toy retailer and services provider with expected first-year sales of $100 million. “We expect to be profitable this year,” eToys Direct CEO Mike Wagner tells Internet Retailer.

EToys first appeared in the late 1990s as a brash e-retailer that, like many early dot-com companies, spent lavishly on advertising and infrastructure, including a 650,000-square-foot warehouse. But it closed its doors for five months in 2001 before its assets were acquired by KB Toys Inc.

Then last May, New York investment firm D.E. Shaw & Co. LP acquired the eToys assets and launched eToys Direct, with a large minority interest held by Wagner and other former executives of KB Toys` online subsidiary.

Since the Shaw acquisition on May 10, eToys Direct has compiled $80 million in revenue through its own web and catalog sales and in toy-retailing services it provides to retailers such as Sears.com, Macys.com and Buy.com. EToys handles its own retail sales through eToys.com, doll retailer MyTwinn.com, and, under licensing agreements, through KBtoys.com and the Sears Wish Book catalog.

“We believe this year will be our first profitable one,” Wagner says. “We’re bringing people back into the toy business.”

 

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