An artist’s rendering of the new Funko warehouse in Buckeye, Arizona. (Funko)

An artist’s rendering of the new Funko warehouse in Buckeye, Arizona. (Funko)

Funko to lay off 258 people when Washington warehouses close

The company, still headquartered in downtown Everett, is moving distribution operations to Arizona.

EVERETT — Collectible toymaker Funko is laying off 258 employees at warehouses in Everett and Puyallup in a move to consolidate distribution operations at a single site in Arizona, according to the Washington Employment Security Department.

Those employees will officially separate from the company starting June 9, says a notice posted to the department’s website on Thursday. The move of warehouse operations to Arizona was previously reported, but not the size of the layoff in Washington.

Funko chose to move its distribution center to Buckeye, a suburb of Phoenix, “because of Arizona’s strategic location and strong talent pool,” the company said in a Thursday news release. It’s leasing a 958,000-square-foot warehouse that it says will bring more than 300 jobs to the area.

The new facility will open later this month, complete with solar panels, green spaces, a gym and room for a future retail store.

“The demand for Funko products globally is as high as it’s ever been and the company recently surpassed a billion dollars in revenue for 2021,” Funko CEO Andrew Perlmutter said in a statement. “The consolidation of several warehouses to one single facility will better improve our customer experience and maximize growth opportunities as our business scales.”

Funko, based in Everett, is known for pop-culture-inspired vinyl figures, with signature oversized heads and wide eyes.

In January, Funko leadership told Washington warehouse workers about the relocation plans. The company said its headquarters and flagship store will remain in downtown Everett.

The warehouse employees were told they could seek transfers to Arizona and potentially get relocation packages. Workers who were unwilling or unable to move were informed they would be offered severance packages if they stayed with the company through their job elimination date.

Generally, federal law requires companies with 100 or more employees to notify workers 60 days prior to closures and layoffs, according to the state Employment Security Department.

Rachel Riley: 425-339-3465; Twitter: @rachel_m_riley.

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