The Build-A-Bear Workshop company is recalling nearly 300,000 Colorful Hearts Teddy Bears sold in the United States and Canada due to risks of choking, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced.
Kip Tindell, chief executive of the Container Store, is sitting on a stool in a Build-a-Bear Workshop in Dallas, trying to affix the limp carcass of a monkey doll onto a metal pipe attached to what looks like a giant cotton-candy machine. Around the same time, Maxine Clark, chief executive of Build-a-Bear, is wearing a red apron and trying to convince a customer at the Container Store in St. Louis that it's okay to give store-bought cupcakes as a gift to her boss as long as they come in a pretty box.
Cute sells: Stuffed animals are a $1.5 billion industry in the U.S. Commanding nearly a third of that market is Build-a-Bear Workshop, a St. Louis-based retailer that lets customers personalize plush teddies, bunnies and other fuzzy friends. Founder Maxine Clark got the idea for the company in the mid-1990s while toy shopping with a 10-year-old girl who suggested that she and Clark could make their own stuffed animals.
A furniture company, a value-priced collegiate clothier and a fast-food chain that's popular for its ButterBurgers are on a short list of hot retail concepts that observers say could soon make a run on Wall Street.