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Big Lots, National Wholesale Liquidators bid for LI Toys R Us locations

Big Lots has bid for the Massapequa location

Big Lots has bid for the Massapequa location of Toys R Us in the toy retailer's bankruptcy auction. Credit: Linda Rosier

Big Lots and National Wholesale Liquidators have submitted bids to take over two Long Island Toys R Us locations that are closing as part of the national toy retailer’s bankruptcy, court documents show. 

Big Lots was the high bidder in the bankruptcy auction for the Bay Shore location of a Babies R Us and Toys R Us at 1851 Sunrise Hwy. A Massaqpequa location for Toys R Us at 5520 Sunrise Hwy. received a high bid from National Wholesale Liquidators. The bankruptcy bids — which can be for a property or for the remaining time on a store lease — are subject to court approval at a  hearing scheduled for June 25.

Big Lots, a Columbus, Ohio-based discount retailer with more than 1,400 locations throughout the United States, has seven stores on Long Island, according to the company’s website. West Hempstead-based National Wholesale Liquidators, a chain of warehouse-style discount stores, has one location locally.

Toys R Us had 12 Toys R Us and four Babies R Us stores on Long Island, some of which are combined.

The 70-year-old retailer filed for bankruptcy in September and began announcing store closures in January.

Bankruptcy auctions of big box retailers like Toys R Us can give discount retailers “an opportunity to get into a market that they weren’t in prior,” said Joshua Weinkranz, president of the Northeast region of Kimco Realty Corp., a New Hyde Park-based real estate investment trust.

Kimco, one of the largest publicly traded owners of shopping centers in the U.S., has 22 Toys R Us locations in its portfolio, including the Bayshore Toys R Us store.

As some traditional retailers have faced financial troubles in recent years, sales have remained strong for many discount brands like Burlington Coat Factory, Marshalls and Big Lots, Weinkranz said.

“The type of retail concepts that are doing very well are the discount retailers,” he said. “If you look at the stocks of any of those companies they have been rewarded for their strategy and these are the guys that are expanding across the board.”

Officals at Big Lots and National Wholesale did not respond to requests for comment. A Toys R Us representative declined to comment.

CORRECTION: The names and addresses of two Long Island retail sites that received bids were incorrect in an earlier web version.

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