June 30, 2011, 5:02 PM

Toys ‘R’ Us sees the future and it is online

CEO says Toys ‘R’ Us should at least double web sales in five years.

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Toys ‘R’ Us Inc. isn’t playing around when it comes to growing online.

By 2016, Toys ‘R’ Us, No. 29 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide,  expects to at least double its web sales, CEO Jerry Storch told attendees June 29 at the Reuters Global Consumer and Retail Summit in New York.

By doubling its web sales, which totaled $782 million in 2010, Toys ‘R’ Us could generate as much as $1.6 billion in web sales by around 2016. "I'd be disappointed if we didn't do more than that," Storch told attendees.

Toys ‘R’ Us expects aggressive growth online because that’s where customers are spending more time and money. “There's a change in the paradigm for how we think about the Internet, and this change has arrived,” he told attendees. “What did we sell online or in the store? Everyone has to stop thinking like that. I almost always check online first before going to a store.”

Toys ‘R’ Us has high expectations for e-commerce based on its recent online growth. In 2010 

  • Web sales increased year over year 29.9% to $782 million from $602 million.
  • Internet Retailer calculates the web accounted for 5.6% of total sales, compared with 4.4% in 2009. Internet Retailer also calculates that the web accounted for 60% of growth across all channels last year.

Over time, Toys ‘R’ Us also has been building up its e-commerce base, primarily through acquisition of sites such as BabyUniverse.com and eToys.com. Today Toys ‘R’ Us sells online at Toysrus.com, Babiesrus.com, eToys.com, FAO.com and BabyUniverse.com.

 

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