The company was started in 1948 by Charles Lazarus as “Children’s Supermarket” and served as a baby-furniture retailer. The business of dealing in toys developed after Charles began receiving requests from customers for baby toys. After including toys in his store, he got requests to include toys for older children. In 1957, the focus of the business changed, and Toys “R” Us was born. In 1966, Interstate Department Stores, owner of Topps and Children’s Bargain Town a sister toy-store chain acquired Toys “R” Us.
Toys “R” Us quickly became popular and was considered as a classic example of a “category killer,” a business that specializes so meticulously in its line of work that it pushes out competition from other smaller stores dealing in the same business. However, after the rise of mass merchants like Amazon, Target, and Walmart, Toys “R” Us lost a considerable amount of its share in the toy market and fell behind Walmart in toy sales since 1998.