Wayne-based toy retailer Toys "R" Us has appointed Antonio Urcelay, the head of its European operations, to also serve as its
interim chief executive officer, the company reported Monday in a
Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
Urcelay, 61, succeeds Gerald Storch while the company searches for a permanent replacement for Storch, who continues to serve as chairman of the board. Urcelay also will maintain his role as the president of Toys "R" Us, Europe, a job he has held for three years.
Toys announced in February, after posting disappointed results for 2012, that Storch would step aside as CEO, and it became clear that a long-delayed stock offering would be furthered delayed. Storch continued as chief executive during the transition, but that role ended Sunday, the company reported to the SEC.
Toys said in February that it had hired Deborah Derby, a former Toys human relations executive, to lead the search for a permanent replacement for Storch.
Jim Silver, editor of toy-review website Timetoplaymag.com, said the announcement about Urcelay confirms what people in the toy world had already known. Urcelay "has been quietly acting as interim CEO four to six weeks," Silver said.
Silver also said the expectation is that the Toys board will go outside the company for the permanent CEO.
In its SEC filing Monday, Toys also announced several changes to its board, involving seats controlled by the three investment firms that purchased Toys in a leveraged buyout in 2005. Joseph Macnow, chief financial officer of Vornado Realty Trust, replaced Michael Fascitelli as a representative of Vornado. Greg Why of Bain Capital LLC was named as a new representative of that investor. Adam Wagleyand Dan Guglielmonewere named to represent Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
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