Gaon Holdings to launch toy store chain

Setting up an Imaginarium franchise was one of the requests of late chairman Benny Gaon.

Sources inform ''Globes'' that B. Gaon Holdings Ltd. (TASE: GAON) has signed a franchise agreement with Spanish toy retailer Imaginarium SA to set up branches in Israel. Imaginarium sells premium toys for ages 0-14.

The ten-year franchise agreement calls for the establishment of ten stores by 2011. This is Gaon Holdings' first deal since the death of chairman Benny Gaon in May. The negotiations for the franchise agreement were started before his death, and the agreement was one of his requests.

Israel's toy market is a tough one, dominated by the local Toys R Us Inc. franchise owned by Fishman Holdings and Leon Koffler, and by Alon Israel Oil Company Ltd. subsidiary Kfar Hasha'ashuim Ltd. Gaon Holdings nevertheless believes that there is room for a premium toy retailer that will be clearly distinct from other retailers.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on July 20, 2008

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2008

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