Build-A-Bear Workshop CEO Apologizes, Offers Vouchers for ‘Heartbreaking’ Pay-Your-Age Event

Build-A-Bear Workshop (BBW) CEO Sharon Price John apologized on Friday to disappointed customers and offered an extended discount, a day after its one-day, pay-your-age event prompted massive crowds, shortages, and early shutdowns at some stores.

In an interview on NBC’s Today program, Price John said that the overcrowded sale event was “heartbreaking,” and that the stuffed toy retailer will offer a sale through summer. The company will also be offering U.S., U.K., and Canadian customers a $15 voucher through Aug. 31 that will still honor the pay-your-age promotion in stores for children during the child’s birthday month.

The event allowed customers to buy Build-A-Bear Workshop stuffed animals at a price equal their age, from $1 to $29. Teddy bears were also priced from $6 to $75 on the retailer’s website. However, big crowds at some stores led to safety concerns, leading to the closure of some outlets or the limitation of customers that were served.

“It was beyond anything we could have ever imagined,” Price John told NBC.

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