(Andreas Hoenigschmid, Thomas Kies)
What do you do in the industry?
I am an artist and inventor and have always been passionate about games and toys. And now I finally have a product that I am proud to present to a larger audience - GeoBender.
What is your claim to fame in the industry?
I am new to this industry. So far I have been known to be very meticulous and persistent. Otherwise I am happy to introduce a puzzle/toy that is accessible to people of all ages and walks of life. Even blind people have enjoyed my product which is a rather unique feature.
Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry?
I have been a maker of toys and tools for my whole life. Either in the form of craft items or fidgets for children and playful spirits. But nothing has quite pulled me in like the GeoBender Cube. A magnetic puzzle that can inverse the Cube onto itself. But once I figured out how to magnetically combine the units among each other I realized that this was the product and idea I had been waiting for.
What are you working on now?
Right now - Getting ready to present at the world toy fair. We have a great team together and I am excited to see how this project is going to unfold
On the long run - I want to continue to create toys that are beautiful, fun and intellectually stimulating. So to become a recognized and established brand that stands for quality toys and puzzles that last and work.
What trends do you see in toys or games that excite or worry you?
I am excited about the industry itself. Toys are the tools that keep us young, and our children busy. And if we learn something along the way even better. Therefore I am looking forward to see education and toys merge more as well.
Otherwise Ill be able to answer that question better and in more detail after the world toy fair. I am curious as to the state of the current market and what has changed and evolved since the last time I went 3 years ago.
As to the one trend that has always given me concerns - Single use batteries.
What advice can you give to inventors who are presenting new toy or game ideas to you?
Stay playful and persistent. And have as many people as possible trial and test your product.
What advice would you give a young adult graduating from high school or college today?
Read at least two newspapers and learn at least one instrument.
What does your typical day look like?
Good question, still working on finding a sustainable routine. And my 6 and 8 year old are not helping. But I dont mind.
What’s your workspace setup like?
Rather chaotic than organized.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Seeing people get happy. Or frustrated. There is a spark of curiosity that toys and puzzles can invoke. And I would say to see that happen is the thing that keeps me going.
What is the worst job you’ve ever had and what did you learn from it?
Working at the front desk of a high end spa. Though I wouldn’t say it was a bad job. But I learned that money can’t buy happiness and some people are impossible to please. Even at the best Spa in town…
What’s a problem you’re still trying to solve?
Working with people and their problems.
What and/or who inspires you?
My parents and my family. And the EJC.
How do you recharge or take a break?
Go to a mountain top or take a swim on a cold day.
What was your favorite toy or game as a child?
Every year had its favorite. Its hard to pick - Model Cars, Maerklin and Boomerangs I would say right now. As for games: Cards, Dice and the Settlers of Catan.
Where were you born?
What was your life like growing up?
Happy and beautifully uneventful.
Where did you grow up and how did that influence who you are today?
I was lucky enough to grow up in a family of music and games. In my opinion the joy of those memories is what gives me the motivation to do what I am doing today.
What is one mistake you’ve made, and what did you learn from it?
Once this year is over I will be able to answer this question. So far everything turned out to be better than hoped for.
What do you read every day, and why?
The News from different channels and countries.
What is your favorite gadget, app or piece of software that helps you every day?
The Ipad, perfect size and weight for me.
How do you jumpstart your creativity when you find yourself stalled on a project?
I meet with close friends.
When is the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?