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By McClatchy Tribune | December 12, 2008
HACKENSACK, N.J. - KB Toys Inc., a once-thriving toy seller that has been in failing financial health for the past decade, declared "game over" yesterday, filing for bankruptcy protection and telling the court it plans to liquidate all of its stores. KB blamed the difficult economy for the filing, but toy industry experts said wrong decisions by the retailer hastened its demise. It shifted its focus to mall-based stores, saddling itself with high rents just as shopping-center traffic was dropping, it stopped selling video game consoles and it moved its merchandise mix away from hot toys and toward closeouts.
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BUSINESS
By McClatchy Tribune | December 12, 2008
HACKENSACK, N.J. - KB Toys Inc., a once-thriving toy seller that has been in failing financial health for the past decade, declared "game over" yesterday, filing for bankruptcy protection and telling the court it plans to liquidate all of its stores. KB blamed the difficult economy for the filing, but toy industry experts said wrong decisions by the retailer hastened its demise. It shifted its focus to mall-based stores, saddling itself with high rents just as shopping-center traffic was dropping, it stopped selling video game consoles and it moved its merchandise mix away from hot toys and toward closeouts.
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NEWS
By Erin Texeira and Erin Texeira,SUN STAFF | December 16, 1999
A Washington-based civil rights group filed a federal lawsuit yesterday against national chain KB Toys for allegedly barring customers in mostly black neighborhoods from writing personal checks. The suit claims that stores in largely white neighborhoods did not enforce the same policy.The complaint is based on tests conducted by The Equal Rights Center (TERC), which examined more than 30 stores in the Baltimore-Washington area since the end of last month, including stores in Mondawmin Mall, Reisterstown Road Plaza and Columbia.
NEWS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,Sun reporter | November 12, 2006
Diehard shoppers now have a Midnight Madness to call their own, and it comes just a few hours after Thanksgiving dinner. Across the country, more malls and retailers plan to open their doors just minutes into the Friday after Thanksgiving to get an even earlier jump on the traditional start of holiday shopping season. The events - named after the midnight games and parties that kick off the basketball season at many colleges - are designed to lure shoppers in the pre-dawn Friday hours before many competitors even open their doors at 5 a.m. or so. It's a strategy that is gaining momentum with retailers as they try to grab the attention of shoppers who have more choices than ever at both bricks-and-mortar stores and on the Internet.
BUSINESS
By Lorene Yue and Susan Chandler and Lorene Yue and Susan Chandler,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | December 20, 2003
Claudia Miller is becoming a Lands' End junkie. The 52-year-old resident of Homewood, Ill., shelled out more than $360 on Lands' End's preppy apparel in a three-day period. But she didn't pick up the phone. She traveled to Sears, Roebuck and Co. stores in the Chicago suburbs. "I have always liked Lands' End products, but it's too hard to buy from a catalog. It's sizing. My husband is very particular about how his clothes fit," said Miller, who works as a librarian. Now that Sears carries Lands' End for men, she can pick up a few things for her spouse and return them without the hassle of a UPS pickup.
BUSINESS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,SUN STAFF | December 23, 2003
One of the hottest toys this season isn't a video game, isn't powered by a computer chip, isn't tied to a hit TV show and is hardly hip. In fact, it just sits there and wobbles. Mighty Beanz - tiny collectible characters shaped like capsules, reminiscent of Mexican jumping beans and imported from Australia - have quietly emerged as one of the most-sought toys this season. With a ball bearing inside that makes them shake, the intentionally misspelled item is among the best sellers at major toy retailers such as Wayne, N.J.-based Toys `R' Us Inc. and Pittsfield, Mass.
NEWS
By Shanon D. Murray and Shanon D. Murray,SUN STAFF | November 25, 1997
When Marcia Sheppard leaves her tiny office in the storage room of the KB Toys store in Marley Station Mall, she walks past a sign that reads: "Through these doors walks the greatest sales force in the toy industry."That credo takes on new meaning during the holiday retail season.That's because Sheppard is a store manager. And store managers both sell and manage the sales force, the checkout clerks, everything that goes into -- and out of -- a store. They are the people who pop out of nowhere when summoned by phone or checkout bell.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Lisa Pollak | December 22, 2002
Some toys have to be seen to be believed. And so it was that we battled the crowds at Toys 'R' Us to check out the most reviled item of this brink-of-war Christmas season: Forward Command Post, a two-story dollhouse that appears to have been blasted with bombs and occupied by a Army commando, a scene so disturbing that, at first glance, it seems too outrageous to be real. But it is real -- right down to the faux tattered Oriental carpet, broken porch railings and bullet-pocked eaves, a three-dimensional depiction of collateral damage that has drawn the ire of parents and child advocates nationwide.
NEWS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,Sun reporter | November 12, 2006
Diehard shoppers now have a Midnight Madness to call their own, and it comes just a few hours after Thanksgiving dinner. Across the country, more malls and retailers plan to open their doors just minutes into the Friday after Thanksgiving to get an even earlier jump on the traditional start of holiday shopping season. The events - named after the midnight games and parties that kick off the basketball season at many colleges - are designed to lure shoppers in the pre-dawn Friday hours before many competitors even open their doors at 5 a.m. or so. It's a strategy that is gaining momentum with retailers as they try to grab the attention of shoppers who have more choices than ever at both bricks-and-mortar stores and on the Internet.
BUSINESS
October 19, 2001
In the Region Baltimore's TBC awarded contract by Yellow Book USA Trahan, Burden & Charles Inc. said yesterday that it was awarded a multiyear contract by Yellow Book USA - among the largest U.S. publishers of yellow pages - to spearhead a new marketing campaign. The contract for the Baltimore advertising and public relations firm will mean between $10 million and $20 million in annual billings, said Gordon Henry, Yellow Book's vice president of marketing. TBC expects to hire additional employees to handle the increased work, but said it has not determined an exact number.
BUSINESS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,SUN STAFF | December 23, 2003
One of the hottest toys this season isn't a video game, isn't powered by a computer chip, isn't tied to a hit TV show and is hardly hip. In fact, it just sits there and wobbles. Mighty Beanz - tiny collectible characters shaped like capsules, reminiscent of Mexican jumping beans and imported from Australia - have quietly emerged as one of the most-sought toys this season. With a ball bearing inside that makes them shake, the intentionally misspelled item is among the best sellers at major toy retailers such as Wayne, N.J.-based Toys `R' Us Inc. and Pittsfield, Mass.
BUSINESS
By Lorene Yue and Susan Chandler and Lorene Yue and Susan Chandler,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | December 20, 2003
Claudia Miller is becoming a Lands' End junkie. The 52-year-old resident of Homewood, Ill., shelled out more than $360 on Lands' End's preppy apparel in a three-day period. But she didn't pick up the phone. She traveled to Sears, Roebuck and Co. stores in the Chicago suburbs. "I have always liked Lands' End products, but it's too hard to buy from a catalog. It's sizing. My husband is very particular about how his clothes fit," said Miller, who works as a librarian. Now that Sears carries Lands' End for men, she can pick up a few things for her spouse and return them without the hassle of a UPS pickup.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Lisa Pollak | December 22, 2002
Some toys have to be seen to be believed. And so it was that we battled the crowds at Toys 'R' Us to check out the most reviled item of this brink-of-war Christmas season: Forward Command Post, a two-story dollhouse that appears to have been blasted with bombs and occupied by a Army commando, a scene so disturbing that, at first glance, it seems too outrageous to be real. But it is real -- right down to the faux tattered Oriental carpet, broken porch railings and bullet-pocked eaves, a three-dimensional depiction of collateral damage that has drawn the ire of parents and child advocates nationwide.
NEWS
By Erin Texeira and Erin Texeira,SUN STAFF | December 16, 1999
A Washington-based civil rights group filed a federal lawsuit yesterday against national chain KB Toys for allegedly barring customers in mostly black neighborhoods from writing personal checks. The suit claims that stores in largely white neighborhoods did not enforce the same policy.The complaint is based on tests conducted by The Equal Rights Center (TERC), which examined more than 30 stores in the Baltimore-Washington area since the end of last month, including stores in Mondawmin Mall, Reisterstown Road Plaza and Columbia.
NEWS
By Shanon D. Murray and Shanon D. Murray,SUN STAFF | November 25, 1997
When Marcia Sheppard leaves her tiny office in the storage room of the KB Toys store in Marley Station Mall, she walks past a sign that reads: "Through these doors walks the greatest sales force in the toy industry."That credo takes on new meaning during the holiday retail season.That's because Sheppard is a store manager. And store managers both sell and manage the sales force, the checkout clerks, everything that goes into -- and out of -- a store. They are the people who pop out of nowhere when summoned by phone or checkout bell.
FEATURES
By Ken Fuson and Ken Fuson,SUN STAFF | November 27, 1998
Rookies. They think they know what to expect, but they don't. Not really.At 6 a.m. today, the doors will swing open at K-B Toys in the Marley Station Mall in Glen Burnie, and Cathy Alexander will learn that the phrase "the day after Thanksgiving is one of the busiest shopping days of the year" is actually a nice way of saying --ARRRGHHHH!!! Where did all these people come from? Say, Miss, does this need batteries? No, we don't have any Furbys in stock right now. Where's Scattergories? Crying children, frustrated parents, the endless sound of Christmas carols and ,, talking toys.
BUSINESS
By ANDREA K. WALKER | February 25, 2009
Be careful with going-out-of- business 'deals' One of the fallouts from a bad economy is store closings. Circuit City, KB Toys and Boscov's department stores are a few of the companies that have announced they were closing some of their doors in this area. But as stores disappear, don't get caught up in the going-out-of-business sales, experts say. The deals aren't always as good as they appear. Liquidation sales often are run by firms specializing in sales and not the retailers themselves, said Tony Gao, a marketing professor and retail expert at Northeastern University's business school.
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