PE-backed ThreeSixty Group goes toy shopping in SBO
October 05, 2016
For decades, the FAO Schwarz on Fifth Avenue in New York was the most famous toy store in the world. But recent years were tough on the retail business. FAO Schwarz had to close its flagship store—home of the floor piano from the Tom Hanks movie “Big”—in 2015 (Under Armour has signed on to move into the building by 2019). And now FAO Schwarz is changing ownership for the second time in seven years, as the AEA Investors-backed ThreeSixty Group has acquired the company from Toys ‘R’ Us, which is itself backed by Bain Capital and KKR.
ThreeSixty Group is a cross-category conglomerate that designs, manufactures and merchandises consumer products for retailers across the US. The company has immediate plans to build upon “the heritage experience and nostalgia of FAO Schwarz,” as ThreeSixty Group co-founder Kirk McLean said, launching a new toy collection and in-store experience that will debut at select retailers in Fall 2017. AEA Investors acquired ThreeSixty Group from Brentwood Associates in 2015.