Mastermind Toys terminates 272 employees in Canada


Published January 15, 2024 at 4:25 pm

Mastermind, Canada’s largest specialty toy and children’s book retailer, has terminated about 272 employees as it was turned over to new ownership.

In filings made with an Ontario court, lawyers for the chain say termination notices have been provided to 232 employees who new owner Unity Acquisitions Inc. will not retain.

The filings say another 40 temporary employees will not be kept.

Some 619 Mastermind employees have been given new employment offers.

The details around Mastermind’s workforce come as the beleaguered company announced the closure of its sale to Unity, which is owned by retail leaders David Lui, Joe Mimran, and Frank Rocchetti.

Last year, Mastermind announced that locations in Mississauga and Hamilton will be among the nine Ontario stores set to close in the wake of the company’s financial challenges.

According to the brand’s website, the Mississauga store in the Hurontario and Eglinton area (26 Eglinton Ave. W.) has closed. The company has also shuttered the Hamilton store at 2180 Rymal Rd. E.

The brand also closed locations in Ajax, Barrie, Cambridge, Kingston, Owen Sound, Sudbury and Vaughan.

The company’s locations in Burlington, Oakville and Milton are unaffected by the closures, and the store will continue to operate its other Mississauga and Hamilton stores.

Before Mastermind filed for creditor protection in November and later liquidated 18 stores, it had about 800 employees.

The Canadian Press

– With files from