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>> American Girl has found a real life pied-à-terre. I'm Con Riggins in New York standing in one of roughly two dozen American Girl locations worldwide. Now, what used to happen is that in order to get the higher-end realistic dolls, you had to come to a store like this or go to the company's website.
But that is about to change. American Girl announcing on Wednesday that for the first time ever, it is going to open a store within a store for the dolls. The location, Toys R Us. That might be just what American Girl, and it's parent company Mattel, needs to reinvigorate sales for the quarter.
Just reported in July, sales were down 20% compared to the same time the year before. The exclusive tie-up will put mini American Girl outlets inside roughly 100 Toys R Us locations by the end of October with more to follow next year. American Girl hopes the timing will be perfect with the launch of a new lower priced Wellie Wisher line of dolls and just ahead of the crucial holiday shopping season.
But the shop in shop business motto has a questionable track record, especially for brands that are supposed to be somewhat exclusive or higher- end. Both Ralph Lauren and Michael Kors recently announced they are pulling back from the store within a store, saying the expansion had the opposite intended effect by cheapening the brand, which ultimately hurt sales.