Bed Bath & Beyond declared bankruptcy in late April and now the Canadian businessman who resuscitated Toys “R” Us Canada has moved in to fill the void left with his own rendition of a home goods store.
Doug Putman, who has made a name for himself taking over failing businesses and breathing new life into them is adding to his portfolio by moving in on the market Bed Bath & Beyond dominated for so long.
Putman is the mind behind Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us Canada, Sunrise Records, Alex Brands (including Alex Toys in the US), T.Kettle, hmv in the UK and others.
rooms + spaces will be Putman’s next venture and he is taking over 21 defunct Bed Bath & Beyond locations to see it through this summer.
Victoria’s Mayfair location of Bed Bath & Beyond at 775 Finlayson Street will be one of the 21 rebranded stores.
The new retailer under Putman’s umbrella will sell similar wares to what Bed Bath & Beyond offered. Kitchen gadgets, towels, bedding, and other household items will all be sold from rooms + spaces.
“With so many empty storefronts across the country right now, Canadians are craving enjoyable in-store shopping experiences, where they can see and touch products, especially when it comes to outfitting a home,” said Putman. “I see such a strong opportunity to invest in Canadian retail and I’m always looking for new opportunities.”
“The creation of a new home brand was a natural addition to my retail portfolio, which now provides shoppers with everything they need across the baby, toy and home categories.”
When Bed Bath & Beyond went bankrupt, over 14,000 employees lost their jobs, according to a report by CBC.
Putman says they’re actively hiring 500 associate positions for rooms + spaces and there will be more opportunities coming down the line later this summer.
Putman is trusting Greg Dyer, formerly General Manager of Bed Bath & Beyond Canada to helm his new acquisition, despite the company’s bankruptcy.
The rooms + spaces across from Mayfair Shopping Centre is expected to open this summer.
Toys “R” Us still hasn’t announced where they will be opening since they closed their Mayfair Mall location in January. H Mart, a Korean grocery store, is set to open in the old Toys “R” Us location sometime this year.