February 17 - 24, 2023
Welcome to Your Weekly News Brief!
All Aboard Friday!
AHOY from the ASTRA Toy Boat! It’s been a wonderful week cruising the Caribbean! The days at sea have been filled with informational sessions, meals together, companies exhibiting, and fun cruise activities. I enjoyed meeting people new to our industry and getting better acquainted with people I knew already. Exhibitors said they wrote more orders than they ever expected in such a cost-effective way, and this land-lubber can’t wait to sign up for next year!
Jenna Stirling, Gene Murtha and I received a dynamite response from retailers and manufacturers in the session we gave suggesting ASTRA retailers become hubs for the Young Inventor Challenge.
I asked Kathy Balogh, Drector of Operations for the event, for her thoughts on the Toy Boat and she said, "Toy Boat has exceeded our hopes and expectations! The mood is elevated, members are engaged, and lots of products are being promoted (and purchased)!’
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Columnist Nancy Zwiers
Future-Proof Your Work Skills
Are you ready for the future? McKinsey released a report this past year entitled “Defining the Skills Citizens will Need in the Future World of Work.” Based on a research project spanning 18,000 respondents across 15 countries, this fascinating report on the skills you'll need most going forward is a treasure trove of perspective on professional growth. I use it in my executive coaching practice to help clients identify strengths they want to fully leverage and potential weaknesses they want to mitigate through structures, processes, and people.
The report defines four major domains of “distinct elements of talent” with 13 subgroups:
Planning and ways of working
Person of the Week - Chris Schroeck
The Thrill of Creation and Making Kids Everywhere Happy!
(Mary) Hi Chris! Thank you for sharing your story us! What are your roles and responsibilities in our industry?
I’m a designer, creator, and design leader. I create new toys and games and, with the help of some very talented people, bring these ideas to life!
Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry?
I began in the toy industry working for McDonald’s in the Happy Meal program. I was working for a company that designed and produced Happy Meal toys for the Latin America and Australian markets. Having created several successful programs, the company was given an opportunity to pitch for a US Happy Meal. After numerous rounds of reviews, 2 of my designs made it through and were mass produced as a Happy Meal for children all over the United States (Snoopy Gondola Happy Meal toy image above). I was hooked at the thrill of creation, moving through the various phases of design, and bringing a concept from a clean sheet of paper to a thing that creates memories for children. I continue to chase this feeling and enjoy every one of the projects I have had the pleasure of working on - crafting each detail to provide enjoyment, surprise, and wonder for children all over the world.
Person of the Week - David and Hazel Pack, Box Blox
Building Up Families, Kids, and Communities
Hi David! What are your roles and responsibilities in our industry?
Creating & Delivering Excellence. I am by nature a creator, innovator, and now an Inventor, and problem solver! I’m also part time problem maker, you can ask my wife! 😉. Sometimes life goes smoothly, sometimes life gets bumpy, but life is a great adventure if you let it!
What are you working on now?
Actively building in value to our product. For example, creating STEM and STEAM teaching guides, tools, and curriculum around our product. That said, we’re building partnerships and sponsorships with corporations, brands, and non-profits. Since we are all about “Building Up Families, Kids, and Communities”. For example, we have recently signed up at the YMCA to support their hand-on Suess Science Day in our hometown of Springfield MO. At the ‘Y’ we are utilizing our company-goodwill moto of “Building the Future Today”. Brands and partnerships are, and will likely be the building blocks of our success for years to come.
What has kept you motivated to stay in the toy industry?
The pure JOY on kids’ faces when they create, build, learn, and explore together! Left to myself, I can get down on myself, yet seeing kids having fun with toys re-ignites my untapped energy inside. We all have untapped talents, finding it is golden! READ MORE...
Cartoon of the Week from... Robert Fuhrer, Nextoy
Have you seen the two Will Shortz POPDuos that Bob produced?
Will Shortz, Crossword Editor of The NY Times, Interviews Josh Wardle, Inventor of Wordle!
Will Shortz, Crossword for the NY Times & Garry Trudeau, Pultizer Prize Winning Cartoonist
Backstory on Cartoon of the Week: Bob suggested we add Cartoon of the Week to the Bloom Report and our readers are loving it!
Have a cartoon or a joke to share with your colleagues? Send it to me at email@example.com! Can't wait to see what you've got!
Financial and Legal
Microsoft defends $69bn Activision deal. Microsoft has defended its proposal to buy Activision Blizzard - the maker of Call of Duty and Candy Crush - at an EU competitions hearing. Microsoft says it believes the $68.7bn (£56.8bn) deal will bring more choice to more gamers. But rival Sony, which also attended the hearing, says the merger would give Microsoft too much control over some of the world's most popular games.
London-based Lunar X is starting to position itself to be a digital-first Disney. The one-year-old media company acquired Spanish prodco Sunnyside Up Studios earlier this month so that it can develop a portfolio of YouTube-first brands and expand animated content into franchises.
CWA president calls on European Commission to approve Microsoft-Activision merger. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) has gone to bat for Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard again. CWA president Chris Shelton recently sent a letter to the European Commission (EC) asking it to approve the deal between the two game publishers, as it would "help make history in rebalancing power in labor markets."
Meta is reportedly planning to lay off more employees. The Washington Post reports that Meta is about to commence with more layoffs, with numbers once again in the thousands. According to the Post and Reuters, the tech giant will be downsizing its global workforce as part of its newest reorganization effort. Meta's newest round of cuts come only a handful of months after it laid off 11,000 workers, or 13 percent of its work force.
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Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) earned US$11 billion in Q4 revenue, representing a 9% decline compared to the same period in 2021.
Even with Avatar: The Way of Water on its screens, cinema giant Cinemark Holdings reported a swing to a loss in the fourth quarter amid falling revenue.
***the above posted after February 24th***
Walmart reports fourth quarter, full year earnings. Walmart U.S. added more than $10 billion in net sales during fiscal year 2013.
Wizards of the Coast tabletop sales up 40% for q4, 12% for year.
ASMODEE Q4 SALES DOWN 5% - Embracer Group reported that sales of $398 million in its fiscal Q3.
Roku Revenue Flat in Q4, Roku Channel Climbs to Reach 100 Million U.S. Viewers.
Trends, Market Research, and State of the Industry
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: FUNKO GAMES - Deirdre Cross, GM at Funko Games offers insight into the co.’s recent partnership with Hasbro and the success of its Five Nights at Freddy’s offerings in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A..
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: HASBRO. Kim Boyd, Head of Global Brands & Consumer Innovation at Hasbro, discusses the company’s big focus on licensing, entertainment, and more in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A roundtable.
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: CHIZSIX MARKETING & MEDIA. Harold Chizick, CEO of ChizSix Marketing & Media, shares insight and predictions on toy industry marketing in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A.
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: THE POKÉMON CO. INTL. Daniel Benkwitt, Director of PR and Corp. Communications at The Pokémon Co. Intl discusses big wins, retail support, and the future of the brand in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry.
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: ASTRA. Sue Warfield, President of the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) discusses the outlook for this year in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: LOUNGEFLY. Derrick Baca, Senior Vice President, Creative, Innovation & Vision at Loungefly, discusses the growth of the brand in this digital companion to The Toy Book‘s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: ALEX BABY & TOY. Jamie Elliott, General Manager at Alex Baby & Toy, discusses the U.S. rollout of this new retail concept created by the teams behind Toys “R” Us Canada, FYE, Alex Global Products (formerly Alex Brands), and Everest Toys.
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: JAZWARES. Laura Zebersky, President of Jazwares, talks about licensing, retail, and more in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: VTECH. Andy Keimach, President of VTech Electronics North America discusses new innovations, learning at home, and the intersection of physical and digital play in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY Q&A 2023: AMAZON. Anne Carrihill, Director of Toys and Games at Amazon shares insights from 2022, and predictions for the year ahead in this extended edition of The Toy Book’s 2023 State of the Industry Q&A
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY: U.S. TOY INDUSTRY DEMONSTRATES RESILIENCE DESPITE GROWING CHALLENGES. U.S. retail sales of toys generated $29.2 billion in 2022, a slight decrease of 0.2% or $49 million compared to 2021. Unit sales declined by 4% and the average selling price (ASP) of $12.68 was 3% higher than in 2021. While unit sales declined by 4% in 2022, it’s worth noting that the industry is coming off two consecutive years of unit sales increases, including growth of 9% in 2021.
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY: PREDICTIONS FOR U.S. TOY INDUSTRY PERFORMANCE IN 2023 by GERRICK JOHNSON, Analyst, BMO Capital Markets. Looking ahead at the toy industry this year, I anticipate pressure on the consumer to continue, particularly in the early part of the year. But consumers are adjusting to higher prices and are getting a better idea of how to manage their budgets. I expect retail sales to accelerate through the year and to end with solid growth in Q4.
Co-viewing parents are driving what kids watch
STATE OF THE INDUSTRY: PREDICTIONS FOR U.S. TOY INDUSTRY PERFORMANCE IN 2023
TOP MANGA FRANCHISES – FALL 2022 'Berserk' Tops Again
***The above posted after February 24th***
World's most valuable toy brands 2023
YouTube content still dominating kid device usage in America. EXCLUSIVE: KidsCorp surveyed 3,500 US kids and teens and found they love influencer videos and apparel based on their fave movies and video games.
Stories, Comments, and Advice
Steve Reece, The Toy Journal. FIVE KEY LEARNINGS FROM PLAYTESTING TOYS & GAMES WITH KIDS, PARENTS & KIDULTS OVER 25 YEARS...Here’s 5 key areas where my clients routinely benefit from running playtesting research: 1. Identifying Products Which Are Likely To Flop Before They Are Tooled, Manufactured & Brought To Market At Great Cost!nOver time, I estimate that one in every 8 to 10 products...
Mattel Confirms That Animated Version Of Barney Still Has Man Inside. “Although this cartoon version of Barney might look different than the Barney of your childhoods, Barney the big purple dinosaur will always, always have a rude, middle-aged alcoholic operating him at all times,” said Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz, adding that while this Barney may have bigger eyes, a more contoured face, and shinier teeth, the disheveled and...
Dillon Ruble and Garrett Jensen, both engineers at Boeing, broke a record in Dec. that had only a little to do with their day jobs: They broke the record for farthest flight by a paper aircraft, sending a sheet of paper 88.318 meters, or almost 290 ft. Ruble and Jensen accomplished the feat with the help of Nathaniel Erickson; all three are cited on the Guiness World Records page...
How toys and licensing are helping 3D printing go mainstream. Companies like Toybox Labs and Hasbro are building up the mass-market appeal of 3D printers with kid-friendly brands, easy-to-use platforms and appealing customizations. When 3D printers made their debut in 1986, the technology was locked behind a maze of barriers to entry, including software, bulky equipment and limited applications.
How Chicago's independent toy companies have thrived. When the category-killer, big-box retailer Toys "R" Us announced five years ago that it was declaring bankruptcy and liquidating all 800 of its U.S. stores, the company famously admitted that it could no longer compete — Walmart, Target and Amazon advertised prices it couldn’t match. Maybe the story was more complicated than that. At about the same time Toys "R" Us...
YouTube’s Podcast Play Comes Into Focus Amid Skepticism From Creators. Kai Chuk, YouTube's head of podcasting, revealed more details about the video giant's plans for audio creators — but questions still remain around monetization and usability. It’s become somewhat of a running joke amongst some members of the podcasting community that YouTube, despite its strength as a major player in the creator economy...
John Baulch, Toy World (UK) - Pragmatism rules … it’s the Friday Blog! Apologies for returning to the Amazon situation so soon, but a) there appear to have been some key developments since I wrote last week’s Blog and b) not much else of note has been happening in the world of toys this week. It’s also a topic that clearly resonates with the toy community: I received numerous calls and emails this week from...
***The above posted after tBR started sending on February 24th***
Nearly 50 years ago, a legendary franchise was born somewhere in the wilds of Southern Wisconsin. As tends to be the case with many legends, the exact details of how, exactly, Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) took shape have become muddy — and even disputed — through the passage of time. At the center of the D&D origin story, one thing is clear: two game designers, Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson, are credited...
They say that toys are “recession-proof,” and to some extent that’s true. Even in times of economic downturn, kids will still play and doting parents will do everything they can to make sure that their little ones don’t feel the pinch. Still, to say that the last few years have been “challenging” would be an understatement: They’ve been a “permacrisis” — an endurance race — and the caution flag has been thrown on more...
TIE chairman Sanjay Luthra dubs 2023 ‘a pivotal year’. Sanjay Luthra, TIE chairman and executive vice president & managing director at Mattel EMEA, explores the future of the European toy sector. The TIE’s (Toy Industries of Europe) mission is to promote the right of every child to play safely and securely and to promote fair practices and fair legislation, allowing responsible toy companies to continue to grow.
Why the adult toys market (no, not those) isn’t going away. Think back to when you were a kid, if you dare. What did you want to do when you grew up? Not for a living, just things in general that you were too little for, or too young to have the final say on. Did you want to do the extra things at the zoo? Stay up all night with friends? Eat cake for breakfast? Get that shiny new whatever that your folks said you didn’t need?
History and Nostalgia
Who first thought of Cribbage? Cribbage was invented by Sir John Suckling in the 17th century. He was a poet, soldier, and gambler who reportedly cheated many of his nobleman friends by sending them packs of marked cards as gifts and then teaching cribbage to them using the marked decks so that he could win large sums of money. Cribbage was adopted by sailors and spread around the world...
Was It Art or a Kid’s Toy? Ancient Artifacts Have Archeologists Raising Questions About Early Children’s Play. Evidence of what could have been children’s toys and games have often been omitted — or misinterpreted — in records, though that is beginning to change. “The child’s world has been left out of archaeological research,” archaeologist Grete Lillehammer wrote in her 1989 paper, “A Child Is Born: The Child’s World...
Who first thought of Hungry Hungry Hippos? The game Hungry Hungry Hippos was brought to America by a WWII veteran named Fred Kroll, who later worked for the Pressman Toy Corporation and discovered the game in Japan. Kroll licensed the international rights to the game from the Agatsuma company in Tokyo and then later sold the rights to Hasbro.
***the above posted after February 24th***
Fred Flintstone’s Bedrock Band from ALPS (1962). In 1962, ALPS released Fred Flintstone’s Bedrock Band. The battery-operated tabletop toy imagined Fred as a drummer in a band, complete with a Stone Age-inspired drum kit. The Hanna-Barbera-licensed toy featured four actions. Fred’s hands each held a hammer-like drumstick.
Marblehead from Ideal (1969). Released in 1969 from Ideal, the Marblehead game used players’ observation skills to drop marbles from a clear plastic marble head. While Marblehead shared some similar elements with KerPlunk, the objectives were different. KerPlunk players aimed to drop the fewest marbles into their tray while Marblehead players tried to drop the most marbles.
It’s kid-tested! Frame-Tray puzzles from Whitman. In the 1960s and ‘70s, Whitman Publishing Company released a range of Frame-Tray puzzles for children. The genre’s simple format was designed to help kids develop visual and motor skills.Each puzzle typically depicted a full-color illustration, often a scene with characters from popular comic books, TV shows or movies.
Licensing and Entertainment
Spin Master, Netflix Bet on ‘Unicorn Academy’ Kids’ Adventure Series Through 2025. Based on a series of books by author Julie Sykes, the animated series will launch with a 72-minute movie premiere and subsequent episodes, all slated for release this fall, followed by a toy line, digital game and licensed consumer product rollout in 2024. Spin Master Entertainment has content planned through 2025, with more than...
London-based Spring Pictures (Mist) and Irish studio Little Moon Animation (Fia’s Fairies) have inked a deal to co-develop a CG-animated special called Tales From The Wagon. Development on this 26-minute project for family audiences will be funded by Screen Ireland. It’s an adaptation of multiple books penned by popular British-Romani children’s author Richard O’Neill for readers ages five to eight, including titles...
McLaren Automotive celebrates its 60th anniversary this year and is partnering with LEGO to release a two-pack of LEGO race cars to commemorate the occasion. McLaren is a British car manufacturer primarily known for its high-performance supercars. The company’s cars have seen a number of wins within the racing world, which is why LEGO is releasing the new two-pack in its LEGO Speed Champions collection.
***the above was posted after February 24th***
Trefl inked a multiyear licensing deal with Hasbro to create a new range of puzzles designed “for kids and kidults” that will feature properties including Peppa Pig, My Little Pony, Transformers, Magic: The Gathering, and Dungeons & Dragons. “Hasbro is the perfect partner for us,” says Kazimierz Wierzbicki, Founder of the Trefl Group. “We’ve had a long-term relationship with Hasbro that extends decades, developing...
Spin Master releases new “Gabby’s Dollhouse” products for Spring!. With the seventh season of the highly-enjoyable Gabby’s Dollhouse looking at a March 20, 2023 debut, Spin Master has released a line of new toys that are all about water-centric play and getting ready for warm weather! Debuting back on January 5, 2021, I got to know about Gabby’s Dollhouse from my niece.
Mattel announces retro toy line for 'Jurassic Park's 30th anniversary. It's time to go Back to Jurassic Park...and those original toys you loved in the '90s. If you were a kid in the early 1990s, you probably remember that Jurassic Park was absolutely everywhere. Yes, Steven Spielberg's hit film based on Michael Crichton's novel was a box office smash that then turned into a home video smash, but even beyond the movie's success...
Mattel inked a deal with Wow! Stuff to launch the “connectable collectible” brand at retail this spring. The small-scale hexagonal pods come with a licensed character figurine inside and can be connected using a patent-pending slot-together system. The line is inspired by Wow! Stuff’s Wow! Pods that launched two years ago.
Disney is making moves to its release calendar and has pushed Marvel Studios’ The Marvels out of summer and into the fall. The Marvels, starring Brie Larson, will now open Nov. 10, pushed back from its previous July 28 date. In a twinned move, the theme park-based Haunted Mansion is jumping into the July 28 spot, shifting from Aug. 11.
Hasbro and Panini America, the exclusive trading card partner of the NBA and NBPA, inked a partnership deal to create the new Monopoly Prizm: NBA Edition board game. Players can collect, trade, and compete with real Panini NBA Prizm trading cards and exclusive Monopoly parallels and inserts for NBA All-Star glory.
For Ronnie Anderson Jr, sharing his Anboran fairy tales with the world has been a magical, heroic journey. It is a journey that began when Anderson, a laboratory scientist, realized he could not find new, original, fairy tales featuring people of color to read to his three young daughters… so he decided to invent his own.
Animated special The Smeds and the Smoos attracted over 8m viewers when it was shown on BBC One and iPlayer over the Christmas period.Magic Light Pictures‘ cosmic animation The Smeds and the Smoos won the hearts of viewers when it was shown on BBC One on Christmas Day, just before the King’s speech, and subsequently on iPlayer attracting 8.1m viewers (30-day BBC all screens data).
New York’s International Literary Properties (ILP) has acquired rights to the catalogues of four kids authors, and plans to develop TV, digital and publishing content based on their work. BBC Studios will get to evaluate the IPs before any other potential partners, thanks to its first-look deal with ILP.
Expanding on an initial three titles, Tactile Games is entering into a six-year partnership with Banijay Brands to produce and publish mobile games for viral sensation Simon’s Cat. This long-term agreement builds on three existing titles that Tactile Games previously made for Banijay’s clever cat who uses different tricks to get plenty of food from his owner.
After returning to screens in a remastered series on Canadian streamer Crave last Oct, Run With Us Productions’ The Raccoons is looking to get back on shelves with three new licensing deals brokered by its UK-based agent The Point.1888. Recharging the IP’s consumer products program with products that will roll out this year are Intercake (cake toppers in the UK)...
Dandelooo has picked up global distribution rights to an upcoming hybrid animation concept from France’s Moonworks Productions and Amopix Studios called The Super Heroes of Nature, which already has numerous presales in place. The 30 x three-minute short series introduces kids ages four to 10 to biology in a playful way. Each episode features a different animal with an extraordinary ability, and explores...
Project X Entertainment and Titmouse have acquired the TV rights to Serena Minott’s popular kids book series The Amazing Adventures of Aya & Pete, and the California-based studios are working on an animated series concept that will encourage kids and families to explore different cultures.
Against a backdrop of corp. consolidation, changing demographics and media’s ongoing digital evolution, movement in entertainment’s upper ranks has shifted into overdrive. In some cases, high-profile executives who have spent their careers at major media conglomerates are cashing in hard-won wisdom for gigs at smaller studios, driven by a longing to get closer to the action, return to their creative roots...
Hulu has acquired 11 pocket.watch shows featuring popular digital-first creatives, and the new content will start rolling out on the streamer this month. The buy includes Dan Rhodes Quick Tricks MiniMash, a package of the teen magician’s short tricks; Kids Diana Show Ultimate Mishmash; and LankyBox Ultimate Mishmash, where best friends play Roblox games and make parody videos. It also covers content from...
Screen Australia has selected two kids series and two family movies to share US$5 million in production funding. On the TV side of the initiative are a pair of space-themed series for pubcaster ABC Australia. Live-actioner Galaxy Girl (10 x 24 minutes) comes from Moody Street Kids and Princess Pictures. This tween sci-fi comedy is about a girl whose life turns extraterrestrial when her newfound superpowers attract...
Dr. Seuss fans might find their hearts growing three sizes this coming holiday season with the release of a sequel to the 1957 classic children's book “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” The new book picks up one year after the original, and like the first, teaches a valuable lesson about the true spirit of the holiday, Dr. Seuss Enterprises and Random House Children’s Books announced Thursday.
Following the recent launch of TELETOON+ as Canada’s leading, multi-platform streaming service for kids, Corus Entertainment has announced the rebranding of two of its linear kids’ television channels as it continues to evolve its offering of best-in-class kids content. Beginning March 27, TELETOON is set to become Cartoon Network, an iconic kids brand known worldwide for delivering the biggest...
In KidZ, a South-Asian female-owned kids educational tech, consumer product, and multi-media company, is collaborating with the iconic children’s brand Sesame Street to introduce new activity boxes debuting this fall. The themed educational boxes, which could center around holidays or cooking, for example, will contain coloring and activity books, puzzles, games, recipe cards, and figurines.
Fred Rogers Productions’ ‘Donkey Hodie’ unveils plans for licensed toys, apparel, and costumes. Donkey Hodie, the preschool television series from PBS Kids, is getting its debut collection of apparel and costumes later this year. Fred Rogers Productions, the children’s educational media organization behind the series, and Licensing Street, the licensing agent for the show, partnered with top brands in a variety of categories...
Warner Bros. Discovery Global Consumer Products and DC Aannounce ‘Shazam’ merch. In celebration of “Shazam! Fury of the Gods,” Warner Bros. Discovery Global Consumer Products and DC have revealed a global collection of new merchandise including toys and collectibles, apparel, homeware, publishing and exclusive games from Warner Bros. Games inspired by the action adventure aimed at the whole family.
Kinder Joy launches NBA Collection featuring 12 new iconic Mascot Toys. Kinder Joy®, the delicious treat plus toy made specially to help parents create joyful moments of surprise for their children, is releasing a new limited-edition NBA collection featuring 12 iconic mascot toys representing different teams.
Sky Castle Toys, Character Options ink Marvel-ous deal for Doodlejamz. Some of the most iconic heroes in comics are coming to the toy department in a new way. Sky Castle Toys, in partnership with UK-based toy manufacturer and distributor Character Options, inked a deal with Marvel to add superhero styles to the DoodleJamz line of squishy, sense n’ shape drawing pads.
People of Play
The Play to Win Podcast Series 1: Everybody Wins by James Wallis featuring Leslie Scott and Matt Leacock. This first series of the podcast accompanies the book Everybody Wins: Four Decades of the Greatest Board Games Ever Made by James Wallis, charting the rise of the modern board game over the past 40 yrs. In this accompanying podcast series, James chats with some of the people who were there to see it happen. (Thank you, Leslie, for the callout!)
Corrected link for last week's Person of the Week - David and Hazel Pack, Box Blox: Building Up Families, Kids, and Communities. Hi David! What are your roles and responsibilities in our industry? Creating & Delivering Excellence. I am by nature a creator, innovator, and now an Inventor, and problem solver! I’m also part time problem maker, you can ask my wife!
Colm Dillane of KidSuper Talks Collaborations With Superplastic and Louis Vuitton. Colm Dillane has collaborated with rap groups like Pro Era, liquor brands like Jägermeister, and footwear labels like Puma. And who could forget the NYC-based designer’s career-defining collaboration with Louis Vuitton at Paris Fashion Week in January? So what’s next for KidSuper? 8-inch tall vinyl toys made in collaboration with Superplastic.
***the above posted after February 24th***
The Insights Family continues to expand as part of its new growth strategy with a further eight new hires, following on from the recent appointments of new Chief Growth Officer – Tom Williams, and SVP Marketing & Partnerships – Rachel Bardill. The further Insights Family eight hires are from across the business including the company’s technology, research, customer success and support functions.
Toonz Media Group has set up a new movie division under president Ariel Veneziano to focus on the production and distribution of in-house and third-party projects. Toonz already has a number of film concepts in the works, including a live-action adaptation of R.L. Stine’s tween novel Zombie Town and Little Emma, a CG-animated pic about a miniature human girl raised by animals.
Susan Wojcicki, YouTube’s CEO and one of the most prominent women in Silicon Valley, said she was stepping down from her longtime role leading the internet’s most popular video service. Ms. Wojcicki’s departure signifies an end to the early, pioneering days of YouTube and its parent co., Google, and adds to a lengthening list of women who have left senior roles at big Silicon Valley companies in recent years.
Disguise bolsters sales team to support continued EMEA growth. Costume company Disguise has announced three new key hires for its international sales team in the UK and Ireland. Showing continued commitment to these markets, Aneesa Beasley has been appointed as head of Sales and Meghan Bird as senior account manager. In addition, Mike McGillion has been appointed as full-time VP of Sales for Disguise EMEA.
Companies and Brands
Hasbro Launches Clue Immersive Instagram Murder Mystery Game Series. The experience, which kicked off at an exclusive event in NY Tuesday night hosted by 'Crime Junkie's' Ashley Flowers, will serve as the first global online iteration of the classic murder mystery game. The 4-week-long Instagram event launched at a two-hour memorial experience for the game’s famous victim and villain, Boddy Black.
Bank-A-Ball, the world’s most advanced portable indoor basketball structure for creating clever trick shots, debuts at retail nationwide this month... announced by ABetter Design Company. Bank-A-Ball is the new adjustable angle basketball backboard and rim that hooks atop a standard-sized door to turn any room into an indoor trick shot playground. David Beker, inventor of Bank-A-Ball, said, “We’re revolutionizing...
BACKSTORY: CABBAGE PATCH KIDS CELEBRATES 40 YEARS. The iconic dolls have marked so many firsts for the toy industry over the past 40 years, including blasting into outer space in 1985, repping the U.S. as the first official mascot of the Olympic team in 1992, and going postal with an appearance on stamps in 2000.
With more than 100 years since the golden age of rail travel, Hornby, a UK toy and collectible company, is releasing a line of model trains designed after the Flying Scotsman, which first left the station on Feb. 24, 1923. The line features a Flying Scotsman train set complete with rails, three coaches, a remote control, and more, but it also features six limited-edition models from different eras of the Flying Scotsman.
The Pokémon Co. is updating fans on projects including Pokémon Go, Pokémon Sleep, Pokémon Concierge, and the new Pokémon Trading Card Game Classic. “Pokémon Day is the most exciting day of the year for Trainers, and we’re honored to ‘Celebrate Pokémon Together’ with them by revealing what’s next for the ever-evolving franchise,” says Kenji Okubo, President of The Pokémon Co. International.
***The above posted after February 24th***
Mattel and Family Entertainment Live are teaming up again to create another touring experience based on a classic brand. Following the success of Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live, the companies have tapped Full Stop Productions to create and design Monster High Live. The news comes on the heels of the Monster High reboot last year.
Melissa & Doug is taking a new step towards sustainability. The company is partnering with PCs For People, a national nonprofit dedicated to recycling old technology, refurbishing them, and donating or selling them at low cost to families in need. “We are excited for the potential impact that our retired technology can have for families in need,” says Mike Macrie, CIO of Melissa & Doug.
TikTok announced today that it’s launching the beta version of a revamped creator fund called the “Creativity Program.” The company says the program is designed to generate higher revenue and unlock more opportunities for creators. The program is available starting today to select creators on an invite-only basis, with availability to all eligible creators coming soon.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the co. is launching a new broadcast chat feature on Instagram called “Channels.” The feature lets creators share public, one-to-many messages to directly engage with their followers. Channels support text, images, polls, reactions and more. Zuckerberg announced the feature by starting his own broadcast channel, where he plans to share Meta updates going forward.
From Toymaker to Dealmaker. Despite inflation hitting consumers’ wallets, there are still some things people will spend money on no matter the economic conditions, like toys. This is why companies such as Moose Toys find it a good time to look for acquisitions. We spoke to one of the company’s executives in an interview. The team is led by the firm’s global head of business development and industry veteran, Giles Musker.
Mother-Daughter duo works to bring diversity to the toy industry. Melissa and Esi Orijin, founders of “Orijin Bees”, have created Black and Brown dolls with the hope of teaching kids to embrace their natural features.WATCH ...
Lego is the world’s most valuable toy brand for a ninth consecutive year, according to a new ranking from independent brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance. Lego, which accounts for a quarter of the value of the whole ranking, saw a 24% yr-on-yr brand value increase to $7.4b. It is worth more than 4 times as much as the next most valuable brand, Bandai Namco. Behind Lego, US toy brands dominated the top 10...
The LEGO Group is relaunching its decade-old LEGO Friends brand, backed by new science and research that reflects how today’s children want to be represented in toys and media. The Danish brickmaker’s latest LEGO Friends sets and content take place in the fictional suburban town of Heartlake City, where a group of close friends work together to overcome the challenges they encounter at school and in...
Barbie School of Friendship marks brand’s first ever educational resource. The Barbie brand has unveiled its first ever UK educational schools resource. The Barbie School of Friendship has been created in collaboration with educators to engage primary schools and KS2 pupils in learning and developing empathy and social skills. Running throughout 2023 in 700 schools across the UK...
Mighty Jaxx launches new Kandy x Sanrio series. Chocolate lovers will enjoy Mighty Jaxx‘s latest collectible range, the Kandy x Sanrio ft. Jason Freeny Series 02 (Choco Edition). Founded in 2012 in Singapore, the brand creates collectibles in partnership with global artistic talents and brands such as Netflix, Formula 1, Hasbro, Toei animation, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Warner Brothers, Adidas and more.
Compass Games revives 'Victory At Sea,' pursues 'Napoleon's Eagles'. Compass Games will be releasing a remake of Victory at Sea in May, followed by the second title in its Napoleon’s Eagles series in June. Victory at Sea: Original 1992 Edition gives a facelift to the classic wargame published by Jedko and designed by John Edwards (The Russian Campaign, Fortress Europa).
After five years, Gloomhaven loses top spot on BoardGameGeek's charts. The blockbuster tabletop game had been #1 since December 2017. While they are not a hard science, and should be viewed with as much scepticism as (video) gamers would look at a site like Metacritic, it cannot be denied that the user ratings on BoardGameGeek play a huge part in helping people choose which board games to buy...
Zapf Creation details major spring/summer launches. Zapf Creation’s Baby Annabell and Baby born have maintained their No.1 and 2 brand positions in the Nurturing Dolls category throughout 2022 and into this year. Baby Annabell’s core range of dolls and accessories is designed to be a child’s best friend, whilst encouraging nurturing skills and establishing positive role-play routines.
New 'Smash Up' expansion incoming! Alderac Entertainment Group will release Smash Up: Excellent Movies, Dudes!, a new expansion, into retail on July 14, 2023. Smash Up returns with an extreme expansion that features the best in 80s cinema. Players will go back in time, rustle some wraiths, and burst some chests.
Smirk and Dagger will release 'Tesseract' into retail. Smirk and Dagger will release Tesseract, a new cooperative dice manipulation game, into retail in May 2023. In this game, players need to stop a reaction that could remove the world from existence by filling a containment matrix. The game plays out on a block of 64 dice called the Tesseract. Players remove cubes from the block to place in their individual labs to isolate...
Two new 'Pokemon TCG' Battle Decks are headed to retail. The Pokemon Company International will release Ampharos ex Battle Deck and Lucario ex Battle Deck, for Pokemon TCG, into retail on May 5, 2023. These two ex Battle Decks feature new powerful Pokemon ex who are ready to enter the battlefield right out of the package.
The 'War on Cybertron' ignites in 'Transformers Deck-Building Game'. Renegade Game Studios will release War on Cybertron, a new expansion for Transformers Deck-Building Game, into retail in June 2023. The War on Cybertron may have been ongoing for millennia, but it's now just breaking out in the Transformers Deck-Building Game. Players will assume the roles of either the Autobots or Decepticons..
Games Workshop reveals two more 'Warhammer 40,000: Boarding Patrol' boxes. Games Workshop revealed two more Warhammer 40,000: Boarding Patrol boxed sets, for the Aeldari and Drukari, which will be one preorder soon. The Aeldari set features 20 Corsairs that can be constructed as Voidreaver Troops or Voidscarred Elites.
Wizards of the Coast announces 'Magic: The Gathering - Commander Masters'. Wizards of the Coast announced Magic: The Gathering - Commander Masters, a new Masters set tied specifically to the Commander format, which will hit stores on August 4, 2023. This new set will be comprised of both reprints and new powerful cards tailored toward the Commander format.
Zinc launches big-wheeled Urban 230 Pro Scooter. Zinc Sports, part of Hy-Pro International, has launched its latest big-wheeled scooter, the Urban 230 Pro Scooter, boasting front suspension and two highly durable 230mm wheels with high quality chrome bearings to give a smooth and bump free ride.
Pokemon introduces Sprigatito cat toys and merchandise. Pokemon Scarlet and Violet's Sprigatito is getting its own line of exclusive merchandise, with items for both humans and cats alike. While plenty of Pokemon, including those featured in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet have had cute or creative items sold based on their designs, pet toys are a bit rarer of a find.
Gaming: Digital, Video, Hardware, and Development
Amazon Games acquires publishing rights for NCSoft's Throne & Liberty. NCSoft announced Amazon Games will be publishing its upcoming MMO, Throne & Liberty, in both the west and in Japan across PC and consoles. The partnership will cover North and South America, along with Europe.
Rovio delisting original Angry Birds, asks players to try live titles instead. Rovio wants to make it more difficult for people to find and play the original Angry Birds so it can slingshot players towards its live titles. The studio says the premium title, which is currently available on mobile devices as Rovio Classics: Angry Birds, is impacting its wider business portfolio (presumably, not in a positive sense) and as a result...
Elden Ring has sold over 20 million copies worldwide. Elden Ring has sold over 20 million copies worldwide during its first year on shelves. That's according to developer FromSoftware, which said it's currently developing various ways for players to "enjoy the world of Elden Ring in the future." That total includes sales of packaged software and digital downloads on platforms such as Steam.
Microsoft signs 10-year contract to bring Xbox games to Nintendo consoles. Microsoft’s president and vice chairman Brad Smith announced today that the company signed a 10-year contract to bring Xbox games to Nintendo consoles. Smith took to Twitter to announce the “binding” contract, promising to drop “Xbox games and Activision titles like Call of Duty” on Nintendo hardware at the same time these games hit Xbox...
Tencent no longer interested in creating VR hardware. Tencent no longer believes that betting on the virtual reality (VR) market will pay off, and has scrapped plans to start developing its own VR hardware. That's according to a report from Reuters, which explains that a changing economic climate and tightening regulations in China have resulted in Tencent tempering its VR ambitions.
Creed: Rise to Glory – Championship Edition, inspired by MGM’s upcoming Creed III Film, arrives on PlayStation VR2 April 4th. Survios, the industry-leading virtual reality studio, and MGM Interactive Inc., a subsidiary of Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM), are excited to confirm the return of Creed: Rise to Glory with Creed: Rise to Glory – Championship Edition.
PS VR2: Sony's next attempt to make virtual reality gaming mainstream. Is virtual reality the future of gaming? It's a question that people in the industry have been arguing over for some time, with passionate views on both sides. And there's nothing like a shiny new piece of kit to rekindle the debate.
Frogwares delays Sherlock Holmes game after Russian attacks on Ukraine. Developer Frogwares released a YouTube video showing how Russia's ongoing attack on the country has affected both the country's people and development on its remake of Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened. Like the developer's previously released video in December 2022, this new video shows what's been happening in the Ukraine for...
Highlighted Press Releases
Press Release: 2023 Cardboard Edison Award Finalists Announced! February 28, 2023—Cardboard Edison has announced the finalists for this year’s Cardboard Edison Award for unpublished board game designs. The 2023 competition received 249 entries from designers all over the world. From them, 17 finalists were chosen as follows...
***The above posted after February 24th***
A TISKET A TASKET, ADD FUBBLES® TO YOUR BASKET! ONLY THE FUN COMES OUT THANKS TO NO-SPILL® TUMBLERS, A 30-YEAR TRADITION OF MAKING FUN WITH NO MESS. Hop to Target, Walmart & Amazon.com For Little Kids, Inc. No-Spill Bubble Tumblers And Minis In Easter Pastel Colors. Seekonk, MA (February 23, 2023) – In 1993, toymaker Little Kids, Inc. turned the bubble category upside down with its innovative no-spill design. 30 years later kids are still tipping, dropping, and knocking over their pastel-colored Fubbles® No-Spill® Bubble Tumblers. Without a spill in sight, it’s bubble magic!
Glass Cannon Unplugged and Genuine Entertainment are proud to announce a long-term licensing partnership with Electronic Arts Inc. and Respawn Entertainment to produce the official tabletop game series inspired by the beloved hero shooter Apex Legends™, which will debut on Kickstarter on May 17, 2023.
WEIGHT, WHAT? NEUROLOGIST SAYS GIVE A FLUFF SO KIDS FEEL/SLEEP BETTER AT HOME & AWAY WITH FLUFFYWEIGHT CAT, DOG. Portland, OR (February 17, 2023) – When a child reaches for their favorite stuffy, their world just feels better. But some children (and kidults), perhaps dealing with neurodivergent attributes (anxiety, ADHD or autism or sensory processing disorders) need a bit more heft to their toy. Say hello to FluffyWeight weighted Cat, Dog ($78) and FluffyWeight Puppy ($48). Parents who gave a fluff reported fewer child meltdowns, smoother bedtimes and overall wellbeing in the house and on the run in a scientific study coast to coast!
Safety and Counterfeiting
Pressure mounts over potential cull of toy safety regulations. Liberal Democrats are fighting to save children’s toy safety regulations which they say have been put at risk due to new legislation introduced in the House of Lords. The Government’s new Retained EU Law Bill (REUL) aims to remove hundreds of pieces of legislation from UK law.
Popular kids toys sold on Amazon urgently recalled over 'choking risk'. An urgent recall has been issued for kids' toys sold online. Parents and guardians have been advised to get rid of three toys sold online on Amazon in a warning by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC). CCPC said that the products affected are the Rocky & Chao Wild Animal Hand Puppets, Caterbee Baby Crib Mobile...
Toy company Kids Preferred is recalling more than 16,000 Disney-themed toys because they might cause a choking hazard in young children, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).The parts on the approximately 16,140 “My First” Disney-character figurines can detach and cause a choking hazard in young children.
Child abuse material found on VR headsets, police data shows. Paedophiles are using VR headsets to view and store child abuse imagery, crime figures show for the first time. The NSPCC obtained the data after a Freedom of Information request to all 45 forces in the UK about numbers of child abuse image offences. It found forces had recorded eight offences involving headsets and VR.
Associations, Shows, Awards, Events, and Festivals
Spielwarenmesse eG, the organiser of the international Spielwarenmesse trade fair, has announced the dates for the 2024 show – as well as a new format that it says will work better for those in attendance. Instead of Wednesday to Sunday as before, the fair will in future be held from Tuesday to Saturday, i.e. from January 30th to February 3rd, 2024.
Licensing Expo has announced the opening of submissions for two new programmes: License This! and Ignite Brand Pitches. Both programmes aim to highlight new branding concepts from never-before licensed and emerging IPs. The competitions will be given a platform on the live stage at Licensing Expo, taking place from June 13th-15th at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas...
Chief executive John Lee has announced that Hong Kong will lift its mask mandate from Wednesday 1st March, finally ending the Covid-19 restrictions imposed nearly three years ago. “We think this is the best timing to make this decision. It is a clear message to show Hong Kong is resuming normalcy,” he said. The global toy industry has slowly resumed travel to international destinations, but Hong Kong has...
6th Toys Milano & Bay-B already sold out. Trade professionals from all over Italy and abroad can register for their place at the April Toys Milano & Bay-B trade event on Toysmilano.com. Toys MilanoOn Sunday 16th April and Monday 17th April 2023, professionals from the world of toys and kids’ products, as well as the stationery, carnival, festive and party markets, will gather at fieramilanocity’s Allianz MiCo for the 6th edition...
Following up its strong performance from last year, Netflix took home a total of 12 trophies at the 50th annual Annie Awards ceremony last night, with its original stop-motion film Pinocchio (pictured) doing some heavy lifting. The Oscar-nominated feature from famed director Guillermo Del Toro took home Best Feature, beating out fellow Netflix productions The Sea Beast and Wendell & Wild, as well as DreamWorks...
Legendary video game industry figures Mabel Addis and John Romero are to be honoured at this year’s Game Developers Choice Awards. Addis is recognised as the first female game designer and, having passed away in 2004, will posthumously receive the Pioneer Award which honours breakthrough in business, tech, and game design milestones. Back in 1964, Addis lead design on The Sumerian Game...
***The above posted after February 24th***
Bluey wins Best Animated Series at Kidscreen 2023 and enters the Bologna Licensing Awards shortlist for Property of the Year. The third season of the hit animated series Bluey, produced by Ludo Studio and co-commissioned by BBC Studios Kids & Family and ABC Children, won the Best Animated Series category at the 2023 Kidscreen Awards, a high-profile celebration of children’s content excellence paying tribu...
Toy industry veterans come together to create the North East Toy Show (NETS). Trade Show Ventures, run by Christine and Alan Blumberg, have partnered with industry veteran, Lea Culliton, former president of HABA and Chairman of the ABC Kids Expo, to create the North East Toy Show (NETS), designed to bring manufacturers, retailers, buyers and key accounts together in February, where there is a void in Northeast...
The Creative Retail Awards and SaveTheHighStreet.org have partnered to recognise the vital role of independent retailers. The Creative Retail Awards and SaveTheHighStreet.org have announced a partnership for the 2023 Awards, in which they will be crowning the best-designed independent store.
RIP - Rest in Play - Remembering Those that have Passed
If you know of a colleague's passing, please send us information so we may share with our colleagues. Archives can be found HERE. For those we lost in 2022, may they rest in peace and play.
Antony Nunn - From the fourth generation of his family to be involved in the toy industry, Antony Michael Redgate Nunn sadly passed away earlier this month.
Toy World is sad to report that Antony passed away unexpectedly on the 5th February, aged 69. He was the fourth generation of his family to be involved in the toy trade, as previous generations ran the well-known Redgates store, established in 1857, in Sheffield. In the 1960s, Redgates became known in the trade as one of the best toy shops outside of London, often referred to as the “Hamleys of the North.”
Antony’s journey into the toy trade began in 1971 when, at the age of 18, he moved to London to work for import business, Cowan de Groot. Two years later, armed with plenty of new-found experiences, Antony he returned to his roots in the North and joined the Redgates family retail business, overseeing Redgates’ wholesale division, Wilson Gumpert. Redgates and Wilson Gumpert were instrumental in the founding of buying group Toymaster; Michael Nunn, Antony’s father was chairman of White Rose Toys, a buying group which was a cornerstone to Toymaster as we know it today.
Antony met his wife Silke in 1977, the daughter of Franz and Marianne Goetz, founders of prestigious doll manufacturer, Goetz Dolls, based in Germany. After Redgates and Wilson Gumpert closed in 1988, Antony co-founded AM international with Mark Eckersley to distribute dolls, children’s toys, nursery goods and even garden gnomes.
In 1998, after ten years of successful trading, Antony decided to forge his own path and Antony Nunn Agencies was established. His son Patrick joined in 2009, and now the business will proudly continue under Patrick’s leadership as the fifth generation of the family to work within the toy trade.
Antony will be remembered in the industry for his good humour, fair and honest business practices, and his lifelong dedication to a trade that he was proud to be part of.
Outside work, Antony was an active sportsman, running marathons and half marathons as well as being a proficient golfer and an avid squash player, in the later years reverting to racketball. He would also never miss an opportunity to support his beloved Blades from the stands.
As a very generous, considerate and kind man, Antony supported several charities he was passionate about, joining Osteoporosis2000 as a director in 2000. More recently he was asked to become a patron of a local hospice: Ashgate Hospice, Chesterfield. This privilege filled him with immense pride and he dedicated a significant amount of his later life to raising money and bringing further awareness to the essential work and care the hospice provides.
Antony will be sorely missed by all those who knew him. He leaves behind his wife Silke, daughter Charlie, son Patrick and his grandson Walter.
John Sepenuk - Co-Founder and CEO of Cryptozoic Entertainment. The following is a tribute from Nico Blau, President & CEO at BOTI Ltd & BOTI Europe BV:
Earlier this week I was informed my dear friend and former colleague John Sepenuk passed away. I was blown away, couldn't believe it and felt a deep dark colored emptiness.
John died while he was exercising one of his favorite passions, kite surfing. He was only 54 yrs young and is now survived by his wife Tania and their beautiful young son Brandon.
It is hard to imagine only 2 weeks ago we had a couple of beers and shared some memories and jokes at my booth in Nurnberg.
John and I met in June 1999 in Carlsbad, California where we were both working for Upper Deck. John was running Asia and I was in charge of Europe. John was charismatic, smart, funny, good looking and he spoke fluent Japanese and Mandarin. When John walked into a bar, not only his good looks would catch the attention of the ladies, but his dark brown voice would make them melt: "Hi, I am Jaaawn, how'you doin'...?"
He lived in Japan for a couple of years and even made it to become a sushi chef. 'Seppi' as many called him was flamboyant and entertaining. He loved life and loved to walk the line. One of his claims to fame: ‘At Upper Deck I was fired 2 times, but hired ... 3 times!’
It was not very difficult to get fired at Upper Deck. Richard McWilliam kept 100's of bullets in his office. Each one holding a name of one of the employees. John had at least 5 bullets with his name on it. If you caught McWilliam at a bad moment..bang!..you were "gunned down". Richard never re-hired people he fired, so for John to be fired twice and hired 3 times was a major achievement (according to John). The truth was John had unique skills and in the relationship with the Japanese Seppi was crucial.
McWilliam would always brag that he and only he made Konami grant Upper Deck Company the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG distribution rights. The reality? It was John who made it happen. Like many others, also Konami didn't like Richard (at all) but the alternative options weren't much better and Upper Deck had John. Seppi did the trick and no-one else. He never got the credits for it. In Nov 2008, John decided himself to leave Upper Deck for good. The paradox: Richard McWilliam had only 1 bullet left, this one carrying his own name.
The truth was you couldn't stay angry with John, even though he would cross the line from time to time. He loved life too much, he lived it to the max and people loved John for that.
Seppi died at age 54, but he didn't leave a stone unturned, so I would argue he lived his life twice. I am sure he had much for more fun than those preaching a healthy, monotone & religious life stile in the hope they turn 100+ years. I am not sure what is better. John wouldn't want to miss anything, and he didn't.
And now God is having his hands full dealing with John in heaven.
John Sepenuk RIP
#cryptozoic #johnsepenuk #upperdeck #licensing #toys #konami #yugioh
Worldwide Magazines Weekly Top Stories
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Toy Trade Monthly Issues
Adventure Media & Events (US)
From the Tabletop to the Toy Department: Hasbro's Dungeons & Dragons Goes Mainstream (The Toy Book)
From the Editor: Let's Start the Roaring '20s (The Toy Book)
The Play Date Partners with WIT to Celebrate International Women’s Day (The Toy Book)
Mattel, Wow! Stuff Ink North American Distribution Deal for Nano Pods Line (The Toy Book)
Warner Bros. Unveils Shazam! Fury of the Gods Merchandise (The Pop Insider)
Sky Castle Toys, Character Options Ink Marvel-ous Deal for DoodleJamz (The Toy Book)
Jazwares’ Black Panther Toys and Costumes Will Have Kids Feeling Like Little Superheroes (The Toy Insider)
‘Monster High Live’ to Bring Mattel’s Fang-tastic Ghouls to the Stage (The Toy Book)
Crayola, Dan Dee Enter Licensing Agreement for Plush (The Toy Book)
Trefl, Hasbro Ink U.S. Licensing Deal for Puzzles (The Toy Book)
aNb Media (US)
Corus Entertainment Revamps Kids Channel Portfolio with Rebranded Networks
New FluffyWeight Plush Proven Effective for Comforting Neurodivergent Children
Pokémon Company to Celebrate 27 Years of the Franchise with ‘Pokémon Presents’ on February 27th
Family Entertainment Live and Mattel Announce Monster High Live North American Tour
VP Racing Starts the Year Strong With New Slate of Licensees
Sky Castle Toys Collaborates with Marvel for DoodleJamz Line
American Girl Declares the ‘90s History with its Newest Historical Characters, Isabel and Nicki!
Peanuts Makes its First-Ever Appearance at the Seoul Living Design Fair
Fred Rogers Productions and Licensing Street Ready First Collection of Donkey Hodie Products
In KidZ Announces First-Ever Collaboration with Sesame Street on New Activity Boxes
Pressure mounts over potential cull of toy safety regulations
Disguise bolsters sales team to support continued EMEA growth
Barbie School of Friendship marks brand’s first ever educational resource
Licensing.biz Powered by Toyworld
Eleanor Tomlinson and Octopus TV’s Andrew Eborn partner for licensing push
ICv2: The Business of Geek Culture (US)
- Stonemaier Games Shares Tabletop Games In-print Vs. Digital Sales Totals
- Wizards of the Coast Announces 'Magic: The Gathering - Commander Masters'
- Wizards of the Coast Tabletop Sales Up 40% for Q4, 12% for Year
- Wizards of the Coast Reveals Product Line Deets for 'Magic: The Gathering' 'The Lord of the Rings' Set
- Rolling for Initiative -- WotC Surges into 2023 While GW Limps
- Wizards of the Coast Offers First Look at 'Magic: The Gathering - March of the Machine'
- Asmodee Q4 Sales Down 5%
- Wizards of the Coast Updates Deets on 'WPN Exclusive Secret Lair'
- Free League Publishing Announces the Upcoming Launch of 'The Walking Dead Universe RPG' Kickstarter
- Two New 'Pokemon TCG' Battle Decks are Headed to Retail
Nación Juguetes (Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Chile & Spain)
Hasbro Reveals Marvel Legends Series Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Action Figures
Wish Toys prepares the return to school in Peru with Nintendo
Hasbro joins Ageless Innovation to produce games aimed to the elderly
Jakks Pacific presents a new line of toys inspired by the highly anticipated film "The Super Mario Bros. Movie"
The Bugg Report (Australia)
2023 Australian Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair
Events Agenda — The ATA Learning Hub
Video of the Week
Azhelle Wade Interviews Rachele Harmuth about M.E.S.H.
Check out the MESH website to learn more and get involved.
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