July 20, 2018
July 2009 | Vol. VIII - No. 7
TDmonthly Goes Inside ... Ventura Toys, Sherman Oaks, Calif.
Old-Fashioned Store Fights Mass Market With Music
Ibrahim Victory first opened Ventura Toys in Sherman Oaks, Calif., more than 20 years ago. Losing business in the last six years to big-box shops such as Toys "R" Us, Ibrahim told TDmonthly Magazine he needed to drastically reconfigure his product mix. He stopped importing high-priced toys from Europe and shifted to mostly Asian goods, which he can sell at huge discounts because of his low overhead; he's a one-man manager, salesperson and buyer. When he moved to a new location, he added musical instruments into his mix.
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Despite the fact that he attends no trade shows and doesn't have a website, Ibrahim hangs in with eclectic offerings and an old-fashioned atmosphere, which attract musicians and kids. He now has the only independent toy shop in his Sherman Oaks neighborhood, he told TDmonthly.
You can get a glimpse of the Ventura Toys exterior and selection in the intro video above, and then scroll down to watch some of the toys and instruments in Ibrahim's store. Though Ibrahim decorates his store with Ty collectibles that are no longer in stock, that company has plenty of newer offerings for stores with more traditional mixes.
(Click on each image below to watch video)
Here are other offerings from Ventura Toys:
Victory Harmonica by SHANGHAI GENERAL HARMONICA PLANT
This 24-hole harmonica features a wooden mouthpiece. ( Watch Video) 6/10/2009
Small Victory Harmonica by SHANGHAI GENERAL HARMONICA PLANT
This small, 26-hole harominca features a wooden mouthpiece. ( Watch Video) 6/10/2009
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