The Entertainer plots overseas expansion

Toy retailer plans foreign franchise operation; Central Europe and the Middle East likely to be first.
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Not content with its soaring sales and rapid expansion in the UK, The Entertainer is now looking towards foreign shores to keep its incredible growth going.

The decision came after the retailer had franchise enquiries from Dubai, United Arab Emirates and the Czech Republic.

Founder Gary Grant told the FT: “At about the sixth request we decided to look into it. When we visited some of these places, we found a gap in the market. There were lots of other toy shops but not any that would worry us.”

Grant said it was important to find the right partners, and that The Entertainer would look at territories where other UK retailers – like Tesco and Mothercare – had experienced success. Central Europe and the Middle East are likely to be the first.

Grant added: “We know that toy retailing is a pretty universal phenomenon and can be made to work anywhere as long as the market is large enough to sustain a reasonable number of toy shops.”

Online purchases from abroad make up three per cent of The Entertainer’s total sales. 

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