The Entertainer was founded in 1981 in Amersham, Buckinghamshire by husband and wife team, Gary and Catherine Grant, who now with two of their sons, instil the driving force and mission – “To be the best-loved toyshop – one child, one community at a time”. Today, it continues to be the largest family-owned toy retailer in the UK with a total of 166 stores.
As well as a strong High Street presence, The Entertainer has a successful website platform (TheToyShop.com) which offers a 30-minute click and collect service and has 29 million visits annually and growing.
Although Gary runs a highly successful business, ethics always come first. The Entertainer has a Sunday no working policy as it believes its staff work hard so it reserves the day for them to relax with their friends and family. Also recognised for its charitable giving, The Entertainer tithes 10% of its net annual profit to charity each year. In addition to this employees are encouraged to donate directly through Payroll Giving with their donation matched each month by The Entertainer, generating over £1million of donations to date. The Entertainer is also an active member of the Pennies scheme, the digital upgrade of the traditional charity box, which enables customers to donate to children’s hospitals by rounding their purchase up to the nearest pound at the till when paying by card. On average, this generates £5,000 of customer donations to Children’s hospitals each week and has just reached £3million in donations.
The Entertainer currently employs over 1573 staff across the stores and a further 231 in the Head Office in Amersham, Buckinghamshire.
The Entertainer was also ranked 49th in the prestigious Sunday Times “100 Best Companies to work for” in 2019.
In December 2018 The Entertainer acquired POLY, a chain of 57 toy shops in Spain. The Early Learning Centre was also acquired in March 2019 with over 70 concessions in the UK and 536 stores internationally.