Build-A-Bear Workshop Unveils New Store Design at Flagship Mall of America® Store in Next Phase of Brand Refresh

ST. LOUIS & MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Build-A-Bear
Workshop
, Inc. (NYSE: BBW), an interactive destination
where guests can create personalized furry friends, is making its iconic
in-store experience more fun than ever for kids of all ages with the
opening of a new store model revealed today at Mall
of America
in Bloomington, Minnesota.


Part of a company-wide brand refresh, the reformatted store,
located on the first level in the north wing, officially re-opened its
doors this morning after a multi-month renovation. The ribbon-cutting
ceremony featured special guests from Parents in Community Action, Inc.,
a private, non-profit agency that operates Head Start and Early Head
Start programs in Hennepin County, Minnesota.

“At Build-A-Bear, our mission is to add a little more heart to
life
, and this new store design makes our unique, make-your-own
furry friend experience even more engaging,” said Sharon Price John,
chief executive officer, Build-A-Bear Workshop
. “We are taking our
signature experience to the next level with new opportunities for family
fun and entertainment.”

The Build-A-Bear Workshop store at Mall of America was developed to
increase productivity and optimize space while updating the overall
brand look. New elements include:

  • Sophisticated new logo, store set-up and color palette
  • Updated storefront, featuring Build-A-Bear’s distinctive signature
    teddy bear silhouette
  • Bigger than ever (seven-feet tall!) Build-A-Bear stuffer prominently
    placed in the store’s center
  • New “Inspiration Wall” displaying different trends and fashions tied
    to pop culture, giving guests creative ideas for making each furry
    friend their own

The Build-A-Bear Workshop store at Mall of America is the third location
to open in the new design with a total of 11 stores planned in the
format by the end of 2015 The company expects to value-engineer
components of the store as it moves from prototype to a standardized
model in order to systematically update existing locations and open new
doors over the next few years.

Joining John at the opening ceremonies were several architects of the
new strategic approach, Build-A-Bear executives Gina Collins, chief
marketing officer; Chris Hurt, chief operations officer; Jennifer
Kretchmar, chief product officer; Voin Todorovic, chief financial
officer; and Eric Fencl, chief administrative officer and general counsel
.

Build-A-Bear Brand Refresh Strategy

When Sharon Price John joined the company as CEO in 2013, she led
a team that devised a multi-year strategic vision to evolve and extend
the power of the Build-A-Bear brand and return the company to
profitability. Since then, John has succeeded in elevating the brand to
better cater to the millennial consumer and other target audiences, as
reflected by ten consecutive quarters of improved operating performance.

The new store design is one of many elements John and her executive team
have incorporated into Build-A-Bear’s brand refresh strategy, which was
developed after reviewing key data points and business metrics, as well
as gathering consumer feedback regarding the company’s brand experience
both inside and outside of the store.

Specifically, Build-A-Bear has:

  • Refreshed all key brand elements including a new logo for both the company
    and its stores
  • Moved toward an enterprise-selling solution with the launch of an updated,
    mobile-optimized website
    designed with millennial moms in mind
  • Extended the brand’s “play beyond the plush” with entertainment
    offerings such as the Bearville
    Alive YouTube channel
    , which features original video content and
    the launch of mobile apps tied to complementary products
  • Restructured the company’s product and marketing functions to
    consistently and simultaneously focus on key segments including
    younger girls, older girls, boys and gifting and affinity consumers

The updates are being rolled out ahead of Build-A-Bear’s 20th
anniversary in 2017.

“As we look forward to celebrating two decades in business, we have
begun to reinvent the company in a number of ways, all with a
consumer-centric, brand-building and data-driven approach,” said John.
“It’s especially exciting to see our brand become ‘multi-generational,’
as parents who first engaged with Build-A-Bear when they were children
are now bringing their own children to share in the experience.”

For more Build-A-Bear news, visit the Build-A-Bear
newsroom
.

TWEET IT: .@BuildABear unveils new store design at @MallOfAmerica as
part of brand refresh strategy. http://bit.ly/1NSnfpl

About Build-A-Bear

Founded in St. Louis in 1997, Build-A-Bear, a global brand kids love and
parents trust, seeks to add a little more heart to life. Build-A-Bear
has approximately 400 stores worldwide where guests can create
customizable furry friends, including company-owned stores in the United
States, Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Puerto Rico, and the United Kingdom,
and franchise stores in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Mexico and the
Middle East. The company was named to the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to
Work For® list for the seventh year in a row in 2015. Build-A-Bear
Workshop, Inc. (NYSE: BBW) posted a total revenue of $392.4 million in
fiscal 2014. For more information, visit the Investor Relations section
of buildabear.com.

Contacts

Ketchum for Build-A-Bear
Kristin Copeland, 404-879-9248
Kristin.copeland@ketchum.com

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