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Name and title: David J. Schwartz, vice president and general counsel Age: 39 Fun time: With some 1,500 stores in 34 countries, Wayne, N.J.-based Toys “R” Us Inc. is one of the world’s leading toy and baby products retailers. The company operates more than 580 toy stores in the United States and 670 internationally, as well as 250 Babies “R” Us stores. Toys “R” Us operated as a public company until July 2005, when it was acquired by Bain Capital Partners LLC, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. and Vornado Realty Trust for $6.6 billion. Toys “R” Us employs about 90,000 people, takes in $11 billion in annual revenues and last year ranked No. 208 on the Fortune 500 list. Legal team and outside counsel: Schwartz has tried to create a mini-law firm by organizing his 10 lawyers into practice areas. They include two employment and labor attorneys, one intellectual property attorney, two real estate attorneys, one litigation and regulatory attorney and four corporate and commercial attorneys-that last category including Schwartz himself. Several lawyers assist in the company’s overseas subsidiaries. “If you ask me what’s the single thing Toys “R” Us tries to do the most, the answer would be to delight the guest,” he said. “So from the mundane point of a lawyer, if the head of advertising calls you about the project, they should be delighted and treated as if you were still in an outside law firm and needed to win their business.” Toys “R” Us has used Simpson Thacher & Bartlett of New York as its primary corporate law firm, regarding transactions such as the company’s sale in 2005. Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon of Chicago has provided litigation counsel, most notably during the lawsuit the company filed in 2004 against Amazon.com Inc. alleging breach of exclusivity provisions in their 10-year agreement regarding online sales. Last year, a judge ordered the companies to sever their partnership, allowing Toys “R” Us to establish its own online store. The company has used Schwartz’s old firm, New York’s Anderson Kill & Olick, for litigation; Bryan Cave for intellectual property and regulatory work; Jackson Lewis for employment work; and Sills Cummis Epstein & Gross of Newark, N.J., and Hackensack, N.J.-based Cole, Schotz, Meisel, Forman & Leonard for real estate work. Daily duties: “I function as a lead negotiator in our important commercial transactions, which could be license agreements, promotional matters, product development deals or sourcing or purchasing arrangements,” Schwartz said. “The key component of the job is certainly functioning as the chief compliance officer for regulatory matters, corporate governance and [Securities and Exchange Commission] matters.” Over the past three years, however, Schwartz’s work has encompassed a lot more than routine regulatory work. In addition to the lawsuit against Amazon, the company decided in 2004 to split its Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us stores. In 2005, it won a $27 million settlement against MasterCard Inc. and Visa International over transaction fees. Schwartz also was busy taking the company private, a deal announced in March 2005. More legal work followed when a shareholder lawsuit was filed regarding the buyout; two shareholders alleged that the company failed to maximize shareholder value. The shareholders dismissed the suit that July and the company went private that month. “Those are very significant, typically once-in-career-type transactions and challenges,” Schwartz said. “They say [that] whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and we’re definitely stronger now.” Corporate responsibility: The company considers outside firms’ commitment to pro bono and diversity hiring, Schwartz said, but has not signed the Corporate Pro Bono Challenge or the diversity Call to Action. Schwartz serves on the board of the Toys “R” Us Children’s Fund, which supports the health and welfare of children. He is a trustee of the Hackensack University Medical Center Foundation. Route to present position: Schwartz earned a B.A. in economics from Duke University in 1989, a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1992 and an MBA from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business in 1999. From 1992 to 2001, he worked at Anderson, Kill & Olick, which he said prepared him for his current job. “One, the work was very broad, so I had exposure to all aspects of the business world,” he said. “And two, Kill is designed to challenge young attorneys to grow quickly and take lots of responsibility.” Schwartz joined Toys “R” Us in 2001 and assumed his current position in 2003. “At the end of the day what we do is fun,” he said. “We are about family and promoting family values and play and fun and safety. At the end of the day, we make a profit by making children happy and delivering experiences to families.” Personal: Schwartz was born in Oceanside, N.Y., and lives in North Caldwell, N.J., with his wife and two daughters, ages 4 and 7. “We have 586 stores across the United States. You might say we have 587 if you add my basement,” he said. In addition to coaching his daughters’ soccer and softball teams, Schwartz enjoys tennis and sailing. Last book and movie: Night Fall, by Nelson DeMille, and The Departed. “I was proud of the fact that I actually saw a movie that received all that national acclaim the same year,” he said. “With two little kids, that doesn’t happen often.”

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