the Bloom Report

Toy & Game Industry's #1 News Summary Globally
Below is Nov 4 - 12, 2021. Click Here for Last Week

Articles posted daily with the most recent at top of each section and previous week drops off on Friday when we email you highlights. 
Not only does the Bloom Report give you all the news you need to know... we give you all the news you didn't know you needed to know!" -Phil Bloom

Welcome to your Weekly News Brief . . . 

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Happy Friday! 

POP Week starts Monday! We’ve brought together Leaders & Legends from different industries to cross-pollinate their creativity and discuss the very genesis of ideas. It will be incredibly inspirational and FREE! For now, you can see the lineup and make your plans HERE. Monday morning --drumroll please-- everything will be premiering LIVE on the POP Homepage.

 

Join us in the evenings for fun activities, giveaways and networking! Check out the POP Pub Networking Hosts below.

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POP Week will wind up with the TAGIEs - The Toy & Game International Excellence Awards. We’ll celebrate rock star talent across our industry worldwide with entertainment, heartfelt stories, and memorable moments together. Wait! Encore! Saturday the 20th, we host the Young Inventor ChallengeThese kids are amazing... you will love their Awards Show!

Most of these events are totally free! Register HERE today and join the People of Play! 

Thank you for reading the Bloom Report,

Mary

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tBR Columnist Nancy Zwiers: Supply Chain Scramble—What’s the Story for the Kids???

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My heart goes out to all the manufacturers and retailers out there who are trying to meet holiday consumer demand amidst this unprecedented supply chain challenge.

Industry decision-makers are scrambling and are making bold moves to secure more supply in time for the holidays.  That said, I live in Long Beach, CA and see the ocean freighters piling up outside the port, waiting for a berth or enough longshoremen and trucking labor to unload.  At the twin ports—Long Beach and Los Angeles--the containers are piled high. No matter how herculean the efforts are, there will be portions of toy shelves that will remain empty.

@MattTownsend of #Bloomberg News on 10/19 posted an article on LinkedIn predicting 40% of holiday purchases will be in the form of gift cards. The article focuses on how young adults, notoriously difficult to shop for, prefer the open-ended flexibility of a gift card as a gift.  I worry that this potential one-size fits all solution is not really a viable solution for young children who still believe in Santa Claus. As CMO of Spin Master in 2016 during the Hatchimals craze, I still remember how desperate parents were to get their hands on a Hatchimal and how angry they were at us when they couldn’t. In retrospect, I think we could have been more proactive about preempting the anger. Read More . . . 

Nick Metzler: DAOs: Crypto's next big hype

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This article is structured like a conversation so I can use layman’s terms. There are arguably much better articles out there for crypto stuff, but I hope this one helps you see a different perspective.

Last we talked, you said that some 3-letter acronym was the next big thing, the future of work in a sense. I’ve still got my full-time job and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Change my mind?

I’m not going to change your mind. You have to do that. You’ll do it either when you’re comfortable enough with the content, or you decide to ape in because of the benefits. I’m guessing it’ll be the latter due to the complexity of the information and how quickly this space is developing. Single use cases that apply directly to you are much easier to grasp than abstract musings about the entire space, and unfortunately, we’re in the philosophical stage right now.

That said, I’ll give you a heads up of what’ll be hyped beyond belief next year. Everyone will have their panties in a bunch about a DAO, which is an acronym for Decentralized Autonomous Organization. 3 long words that make you want to put a bullet in your head.

Settle down, it’s not that bad. It’s just different. Think of DAOs as a new type of business structure, like an LLC or a C-Corp. Interestingly enough, they’re already legal as a business structure in Wyoming.

 

Ok so what is a DAO and why does it matter. Read More  . . . 

TAGIE Lifetime Achievement Honoree: Pressman Family and Toy Company 

A Short History by Jim Pressman

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The beginnings of Pressman Toy really started even before my Father, Jack Pressman, started his company in 1922. As early as 1916, when Jack was 21 years old, he worked with his father at the Pressman Sporting Goods and Toys store, located in the Harlem section of New York City.

 

Soon after Jack was discharged from the Army, in 1918, he picked up where he had left off. First working for the Groper Company, makers of metal toys. His next move was to become a partner in the North American Toy Company, a jobbing firm that had started to manufacture its own products. After Jack joined in 1922, the name of the company was changed to J. Pressman & Company. Jack was sales and product development, his partner, Max Eibitz, ran the factory.

 

In the early years the product line included a variety of what they called "Playthings". There were musical instruments like their Zellophone, embroidery sets, bubble pipes, crayons, archery sets, fishing lines, mosaic beads and a variety of games such as Bean Bag Toss,Bollo Ball ( skill ball), Soldier Ten Pins and lots more!

 

The first major breakthrough was when Jack found and then manufactured a game initially called Hop Ching Checkers which eventually became known as Chinese Checkers. Fortunately for Jack, he had invested in a marble factory, so when Chinese Checkers took off and many other toy companies wanted to make their own versions, Jack got all the marbles he needed while other companies couldn't get delivery. The success of this game vaulted Pressman into an entirely new level in the industry.  Read More . . . 

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Financial & Legal News . . .

Beanie Babies airlifted from Chinese factories to O’Hare to circumvent shipping backlogs in time for the holidays. With his Beanie Babies stuck at sea aboard a flotilla of slow boats from China, Chicago billionaire Ty Warner has taken to the skies to circumvent the ongoing shipping crisis, booking entire cargo planes to get his signature stuffed animals home for the holidays. If only Buckley the Deer and Lola the Llama could earn air miles.

(the above posted after November 12th)

Good news for US toy companies – Trans-Pacific ocean freight rates show initial signs of easing.  The discounting and waiving of premium fees for late November and December shipments caused a significant fall in container spot rates this week. According to a report in The Loadstar, some carriers have begun to offer discounts on shipping costs from Asia to the US and Europe, as peak season gives way to a traditionally quieter period for the global shipping market. 

Eurofins Softlines & Leather – Toys & Hardlines has acquired MTS as part of its strategic expansion in consumer products industry. Eurofins S&L-T&H, comprised of a global network with a strong footprint in Europe, is an innovative and fast-growing services provider specialised in sustainability, quality and safety solutions for the textiles, leather, footwear, toys and hardgoods industry. MTS, having been...

Prices climbed 6.2 percent in October compared with last year, the largest increase in 30 years, as inflation strains economyPrices rose 6.2 percent in October compared with a year ago, the largest annual increase in about 30 years, as rising inflation complicates the political agenda for the White House and policymakers’ road map for the economy heading into the end of the year. 

Biden rolls out multibillion-dollar plan to upgrade aging U.S. ports after passage of infrastructure bill. The Biden administration outlined several initiatives on Tuesday aimed at addressing immediate supply chain challenges and other disruptions affecting global commerce. Several senior administration officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to share details of the proposed plans, …

UK economic growth slows as supply problems hit the recoveryUK economic growth slowed between July and Sept.as supply chain problems hindered the recovery, latest official figures show. The Office for National Statistics said consumer spending increased as Britain continued to emerge from lockdown. But that was offset by falls in other areas of the economy, leaving growth for the three months of 1.3%....

Apple v Epic: Court denies delay on App Store changesA US federal judge has denied a plea by Apple to delay changes to its App Store as a result of its landmark legal battle with Epic Games. Apple largely won the fight with the maker of Fortnite. However, it was told it could no longer ban developers from telling customers about non-Apple payment options. 

Peter Jackson sells visual effects firm for $1.6bn to UnityPart of the New Zealand-based visual effects studio co-founded by Oscar-winning director Sir Peter Jackson has been sold for $1.6bn (£1.2bn). A division of Weta Digital, which has worked on films including Lord of the Rings and Avatar, is being bought by video games software company Unity. 

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Trends, Market Research Reports . . .

NPD Insight - have you done your Christmas shopping yet?

 

ToyWorld (UK) A fresh start - 2022 Q1 ranges . . . . . . October 2021 NPD BookScan - Top 20 Author, Manga, Superhero Graphic Novels . . . . . . . Touching Base with leading licensors . . . . . . . ToyWorld: Fab-yule-ous! Here's Talking Shop . . . . . . October 2021 NPD BookScan - Top 20 Kids Graphic Novels . . . . . . Total revenue of the world toy market was recorded at around 94.7 billion U.S. dollars in 2020 and grown by over 13 percent since 2010 . . . . . . . Brits most likely to do all their Christmas shopping online, new global data reveals . . . . . .  VR to be a $51bn market by 2030, says GlobalData.

Financial & Brokerage News . . .

Eternals and Clifford the Big Red Dog led the US box office this weekend . . . . . . . Sandbox acquires two mobile game makers . . . . . . . Dubit raises US$8 million for eSports program . . . . . . . VTech 2021/2022 interim results reveal drop in revenue . . . . . . OnBuy posts 224% annual revenue growth . . . . . . . . The UK Works' strong first half affected by supply chain costs

(the above posted after November 12th)

Disney’s direct-to-consumer revenue is up 55% . . . . . . B&M results reveal supply chain challenges . . . . . . Sony lowers PlayStation 5 production outlook due to component shortage . . . . . . Gaming investment, M&A activity continue tracking well above 2020 . . . . . . Diamond, Alliance hit by ransomware attack . . . . . . Moonbug acquired by Media Company . . . . . . Roblox revenues surpass $500m in Q3, bookings up 28% . . . . . . Unity's revenue jumps 43% for Q3 . . . . . . Zynga reports revenues of $705m in Q3 . . . . . . . Party City reports Third Quarter 2021 results; total revenue for fiscal October 2021 and provides Fourth Quarter 2021 business outlook . . . . . . Tencent international revenue up, China's regulations limit domestic growth . . . . . .  Nexon reports mobile game revenue down 44% for Q3

Future Financial Reporting . . .

Toyjobs has been the dominant recruiting

Stories, Comments & Advice . . .

Santa’s Top Toy Sellers This Year Are Influencers.  Influencers, and the videos they post on TikTok, YouTube and other social media platforms have replaced Saturday morning cartoons as the way to market toys to kids. Last year, due to the pandemic, the hours kids spent watching YouTube and TikTok videos jumped and toy makers saw such a surge in influencer-driven toy sales that many have permanently shifted...

(the above posted after Nov. 13th)

John Baulch, ToyWorld UK -  A Festive Frenzy… it’s the Friday Blog! As we head into the ‘make or break’ weeks of the year, it is inevitable that people start to get a little nervous. A retailer recently flagged up to me that there have been some quite hefty week-on-week sales drops across October compared to last year, although I do think it is important to put them in context.

Startup Tests Rocket Launched by Super-Powerful Slingshot.  It's a crazy idea — and it might just work. Space startup SpinLaunch has a wild idea: instead of launching rockets vertically from the ground, why don’t we spin them inside a massive centrifuge and use that built up energy to slingshot them to high altitudes, where they can kick on relatively small rocket engines to cover the final distance into orbit?

Could ‘Eternals’ Move the Needle in the Middle East By Putting an Openly Gay Character on Screen?  When “Eternals,” the first movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe featuring a gay superhero, rolls out in the Arab world on Thursday, the Disney-distributed blockbuster will, unsurprisingly, skip releases in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman, mainly due to its LGBTQ+ content.

The Most Over-the-Top Board Games In Existence.  Tabletop classics are going upscale, as more discover the charms of low-fi entertainment that doubles as home décor. Indoor-amusement trends have dovetailed with the expansion of global fashion brands into home décor, producing a new batch of luxurious, limited-edition and redesigned classics.

Ho, ho, no: For maker of wooden toys, the struggle ahead of Christmas isn’t finding supplies, but finding workers.  Unlike much of the toy industry, Maple Landmark isn’t suffering from a lack of imported materials as global supply lines buckle. The maker of wooden toys gets nearly all its lumber from nearby mills and has little trouble buying lacquer, paint and sandpaper from its Vermont suppliers.

In the supply chain battle of 2021, small businesses are losing out to Walmart and AmazonIndependent retailers are getting squeezed out as suppliers, factories and freight companies prioritize national brands: ‘We’re at the whim of a broken supply chain.’ Toy shop owner Kim Mitchell placed her holiday orders months ago, but she has no idea what will make it to her store on time. 

Toys R Us UK opens web page for prospective employees. The new Toys R Us UK operation has commenced its initial recruitment drive. Although there is no confirmed location for a potential office as yet, nor any concrete timelines for the business to start trading, the retailer has confirmed to Toy World that it is inviting applications of interest from UK-based retail professionals for a range of positions.

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Remembering the Toy Industry's Past . . . 

Spudsie the Hot Potato Game from Ohio Art (1966). Manufactured Hot Potato games have adorned store shelves since the 1950s. In 1966, Ohio Art threw its hat in the ring with the release of Spudsie, the Hot Potato Game. Ohio Art’s version was a red plastic hand-held “potato” with a painted-on face and goofy smile. Spudsie stood about 7-inches tall and was light enough to be easily tossed about by groups of children. A knob in the toy’s back allowed for one of five different time settings to be chosen.

“The Toys That Built America” New Four-Part Series Premieres Nov. 28 @ 9/8c. The HISTORY® Channel unboxes the next installment of its popular “That Built” franchise with the new four-part docuseries “The Toys That Built America” chronicling the toy titans whose imaginations soared to build billion-dollar empires, the rivalries that gave rise to the modern toy industry and the history of the visionaries behind iconic products like Monopoly® and G.I. Joe®.

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Worldwide Licensing News . . .

Chip and Potato locks in master toy partner.  On the heels of a season-three pickup at Netflix, WildBrain has tapped JAKKS Pacific to manage the 2D-animated preschool show's toy business globally. The LA-based toyco is readying a consumer products program that will include plush, figures, playsets and role play items when it hits shelves in North America, the UK and Australia starting in fall 2022.

Crayola Positions Itself for Growth Within the Location-Based Entertainment Industry.  Crayola LLC announced today that the premier children’s creativity brand is actively seeking partners around the world to license and develop new iterations of its location-based entertainment (LBE) venue—Crayola Experience, a larger-than-life, immersive, and interactive family destination.

Encantos, 3Pas ink development deal  The first IP to come out of the collaboration will encompass an animated series, consumer products, publishing and interactive experiences.  The first project to come out of the collaboration centers around a confident, street-smart boy who unwittingly gets into sticky situations, and then must rely on his humor and wits to get out of them. 

Numberblocks success adds up to global master toy deal for Learning Resources.  Momentum builds following launch of best-selling Numberblocks MathLink Cubes Activity Sets, with licensee Learning Resources granted worldwide master toy deal from 2022. BAFTA award-winning Numberblocks teaches children how numbers work with fun characters and engaging narratives outlining basic maths skills...

Jazwares, the master toy manufacturing partner for Pokémon, has extended the agreement with The Pokémon Company int'l, to add further direct distribution rights to its existing list of territories, which include USA, Canada & Mexico.  As of January 2022, distribution of the Jazwares line will transition from Character Options in the UK and Ireland to the local Jazwares team. 

JAKKS PACIFIC, MOONBUG REVEAL COCOMELON SEASONAL PRODUCTS IN DEVELOPMENT. Based on a deal announced earlier this year with Moonbug Entertainment to become the North American seasonal toy partner for CoComelon, Jakks Pacific is currently developing themed furniture, ball pits, trampolines, and dance mats to be released next spring.

(the above posted after November 13th)

Jada Toys Inks Deal with Fred Rogers Productions for Donkey Hodie Toys.  Jada Toys continues its expansion beyond die-cast and R/C. Following the launch of its B-Kind Dolls, its direct-to-consumer NEXT Level platform, and a range of Universal Monsters Action Figures this fall, the company inked a deal with Fred Rogers Productions to create a range of toys inspired by the PBS Kids series Donkey Hodie

Surge Licensing tapped to lead toy, consumer products licensing for ‘Epic Seven’. Surge Licensing is looking to do some brand building for the mobile anime RPG, Epic Seven (E7). The company was tapped to serve as North American licensing agent for the game which is developed by Super Creative and published by Smilegate Megaport. 

Crayola Announces an Expanded Partnership with Red Games Co. Crayola has announced an expanded partnership with Red Games Co., a mobile gaming studio focused on creating games and experiences for multigenerational family-friendly audiences. Crayola originally began working in close collaboration with Red Games Co. as the developer for the Crayola Create and Play app, and Red Games Co. will now take on...

Ferly’s Momolu & Friends gets a master toy partner. Finnish animation studio Ferly has appointed Hong Kong-based United Smile as the master toy licensee for its Momolu & Friends brand, preparing a consumer products program that will include figures, plush, playsets and arts & crafts items to hit shelves worldwide in 2023. 

Sony Pictures CP Unveils ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ Licensing Collabs. In advance of the “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” theatrical release on Nov. 19, Sony Pictures Consumer Products announced that it is bolstering the “Ghostbusters” franchise with all-new licensing collaborations to celebrate the film. With merchandise and interactive experiences covered across all categories, including apparel, publishing, toys and collectibles …

JAKKS Pacific releases ‘Super Mario’ merch. JAKKS Pacific have announced a new Super Mario” product line and collectibles line. “We have seen our POS grow double digits for ‘Super Mario’ across all major retailers this year,” says Craig Drobis, senior vice president, JAKKS Pacific. “There’s no question the brand is stronger than ever and we are filling this demand with an array of new ‘Super Mario’ figures,...

New ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ collectibles slated for holiday season. In preparation for the upcoming holiday season and beyond, Konami Cross Media has signed new licensing agreements and renewed a few, bringing a new wave of “Yu-Gi-Oh!” collectible merchandise to the global retail marketplace. The announcement was made by Jennifer Coleman, vice president, licensing and marketing, Konami Cross Media. 

WildBrain Spark expands to the metaverse. WildBrain Spark, a YouTube and YouTube Kids AVOD network, is now the exclusive advertising partner of Gamefam, one of the publishers on Roblox, with a game catalog including “Tower of Misery,” “Twilight Day Care” and “Car Dealership Tycoon.” Through this partnership, WildBrain Spark and Gamefam are creating brand-safe, relevant and audience-appropriate ...

Moose Toys building consumer products licensing program for Magic MixiesMoose Toys launched Magic Mixies Magic Cauldron this fall. The response to Magic Mixies has prompted the company to accelerat9e a global consumer products licensing program with top agents in key territories as well as a robust content plan via strategic entertainment partnerships. 

Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Jane Lynch and More Lend Voices to New Tonies Blocks. Celebs and experts lend their voices to the new toy launch from tonies. Tonies Blocks are the newest additions to tonies, combining STEAM learning with the Toniebox system. Integrated with the Toniebox audio player, Tonies Blocks deliver educational content for young children while removing the screen from the experience. 

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People . . . 

“Power Kid Podcast,” host Phil Albritton welcomes Paul Weibel, manager of consumer sales at Trend Enterprises.  Over the course of his career, Weibel, a former sea captain, has held positions at a variety of toy and game companies, including MindWare, The Manhattan Toy, Asmodee, Hansa Creation, and Magnetic Poetry. At Trend Enterprises, Weibel is leading sales as the company seeks to carve a unique niche...

Oregon Trail game history: An interview with the inventor, Don Rawitsch. - Slate Magazine. Fifty years ago this winter, a young student teacher by the name of Don Rawitsch introduced his eighth grade American history class to a computer game on westward expansion that he had developed along with his colleagues Bill Heinemann and Paul Dillenberger. 

ZAG animation studio has established an anti-piracy department, supported by two new appointments. Julian Zag, EVP of global operations and head of global consumer products, will lead the anti-piracy efforts. Meanwhile, Marie-Claire Trinh Van Hi and Bei Zhou will join the company as global brand protection analysts. They will report to vice president of global e-commerce, Christophe Vallade...

(the aboved posted after November 12th)

President of Taste Beauty, Alex Fogelson, joins us for this episode of ShopTalk. Taste Beauty is a leading beauty brand for teens, tweens, and beyond creating innovative beauty products based on everyone’s favorite brands.

3D-printing company Toybox Labs has set up Malcolm Bird as its first-ever COO. The former Turner exec is already working to grow the company’s kid-focused business lines—including a new direct-to-consumer subscription service called Play Pack—and international expansion is a goal for 2022. Bird, who has served as an advisor to Toybox since October 2019, started in this new role on November 1 and plans to split....

Exclusive: Universally speaking with Paul Bufton. John Baulch caught up with NBC Universal Brand Development’s vice president EMEA to reflect on the events of the past 18 months and look ahead to 2022. Next year is going to be a ‘really significant’ one for NBCUniversal, according to Paul Bufton, with not one but two major movie launches lined up for summer 2022 – Jurassic World and Minions. 

U.S. Play Coalition and Clemson University’s Youth Learning Institute are proud to announce the 2021  Youth Development Practitioner Award Winner: joyce Hemphill, PhD. First awarded in 2017, the Youth Learning Institute’s Youth Development Practitioner Award recognizes outstanding performance in the creation and implementation of youth development programs or services. 

Disguise hires new marketing manager for EMEA. Costume company Disguise has announced another key hire to its EMEA team with Lianne Barber taking on the role of marketing manager. With over a decade of marketing, brand management and licensing experience at The Entertainer, Lianne will lead all marketing efforts in the EMEA territory for Disguise, a division of toy and consumer products manufacturer...

Moonbug Entertainment names Joan Grasso as head of consumer products, North AmericaFollowing the recent news that Moonbug Entertainment will be purchased by a new, currently unnamed media company — led by former Disney executives Kevin Mayer and Tom Staggs and backed by investment capital from Blackstone, the company behind Blippi and CoComelon is plotting its next push into consumer products.

Maria Doolan joins ZAG as VP of TV content. ZAG animation studio named Maria Doolan to the new position of VP of TV content. She will oversee global strategy for content distribution across all platforms (including television, home entertainment, and digital media) for select ZAG Heroez properties, with priority focus on its newest IP, Ghostforce. 

Addo Play appoints new international sales director. Addo Play has appointed Stefanie Moore as its new international sales director to oversee the international sales team for its two brands, Addo & Early Learning Centre. The focus will be on developing Addo Play’s strategic partners and further developing the companies brands in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia/New Zealand. 

Zynga hires a VP of blockchain gaming. Zynga today announced that it is embracing NFTs with the hiring of Matt Wolf as its vice president of blockchain gaming. "Wolf will focus on the opportunity to integrate non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and blockchain technology into Zynga's existing portfolio and owned IP, as well as to develop games from inception that are built with NFTs as part of the core gameplay loop," the company said. 

Mike Brighty retires from University GamesUniversity Games has announced that Mike Brighty, senior vice president of international sales, retired from University Games and the toy industry in October. Mike was a mainstay on the UK toy industry scene since joining Hasbro in 1989 and his career has taken him to international stints with Hasbro as well as Jakks and Toy Lobster.

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Companies, Brands . . .  

Disney Branded TV puts Hailey On It  Produced by Disney Television Animation, the newly greenlit comedy-adventure series is created and exec produced by Devin Bunje and Nick Stanton. The comedy-adventure centers around a risk-averse hero who’s tasked with saving the world by completing every item on a long list of challenging tasks.

Funko Takes Steps Toward Sustainability with How2Recycle.  The massive success of Funko‘s Pop! Vinyl figures equals a lot of packaging. Now, in an effort to move toward a more sustainable future, Funko has joined How2Recycle to show its fans how to properly dispose of the outer cardboard boxes that many of its products come packed in.

The Toy Book’s Get List Connects Retailers and Manufacturers with In-Stock, Fast-Ship Toys and Games!  In an effort to connect retailers to manufacturers to keep shelves stocked — especially amid trade show cancellations — the Toy Book introduces The Get List, a curated list of in-stock products that retailers can get fast from U.S. warehouses. Browse the list early and often to see the latest products...

Hasbro partners with LeVar Burton on new game show   The Reading Rainbow and Star Trek: TNG star will host a new series based on the toyco's popular Trivial Pursuit board game. LBE’s namesake, actor LeVar Burton (Star Trek: The Next Generation), will host and serve as executive producer on the series, which is currently in development at eOne. 

Stampede Ventures, UTA launch HappyNest  Headed by former MGA exec Sadaf Cohen Muncy, the incubator will provide creators with development funding and help them maintain control of their IPs. As prodcos and creators debate how much IP ownership is enough, LA-based companies Stampede Ventures and United Talent Agency have launched an indie animation incubator to help artists maintain creative ...

Sesame launches special to celebrate API community   See Us Coming Together: A Sesame Street Special will also introduce Korean American Muppet Ji-Young when it premieres on November 25. This new one-off celebrates the diversity of Asian and Pacific Islander (API) communities, and will premiere on Nov 25 across platforms including Cartoonito on HBO Max, PBS KIDS, and Sesame’s YouTube, Facebook and Instagram channels.

Roblox launches US$10-million edu-game fund   Three projects have already received support from the Roblox Community Fund, designed to bolster the platform's STEM-focused educational content. Among the first RCF funding recipients are non-profit robotics community FIRST and educational game developer Filament Games, which are partnering on a new virtual robotics title based on Filament’s sandbox game RoboCo.

Nickelodeon orders 2 new shows   The kidcaster is doubling down on comedy and adventure with its first Intergalactic Shorts Program series order and a book adaptation. Nickelodeon has given the greenlight to two new animated series, Rock, Paper, Scissors and Max & the Midknights. Nickelodeon Animation Studio will produce both series. No release date or episode length for the projects have been announced yet.

Hasbro launches Learn with Peppa preschool program.  The early education initiative will kick off with an app in 2022, before expanding with an 80-title publishing range and plans for interactive experiences. Developed in house and set to launch in 2022, the learning app is designed for kids ages three to five, and will feature educational activities with a focus on reading, writing, exploration and creativity.

Mattel rolled into The LA Auto Show to drop the curtain on the new Barbie Extra Convertible. The life-sized version of the vehicle from Barbie designer Judy Choi was created by Mattel‘s vehicle team. The unveiling was timed to the launch of the toy version which is available at Walmart this holiday season.

Universal continues Jurassic World legacy ahead of 22 movie release   Following another colossal year for the franchise, Universal has readied a T.Rex sized footprint for Jurassic World Dominion. “The new film is about as big as it gets for the franchise which continues to deliver after almost three decades,” said Paul Bufton, VP of EMEA NBCUniversal Brand Development.

Suppliers and consumers react with shock as Amazon UK stops Visa credit purchases.   The online retailer Amazon will stop accepting payments made on Visa credit cards in Jan., citing 'high fees'. It has been noted that while it’s dispute with Visa goes back some months, Amazon has a much closer relationship with Mastercard: in 2017 it launched the Amazon Platinum Mastercard, which offers customers rewards and...

Asda trial partnership with The Entertainer to end in 22   Asda suppliers have been notified that the trial of The Entertainer aisles, which started a year ago, will be winding down over the next few months. Following a successful trial partnership between The Entertainer and Asda to manage toy departments within Asda stores, it has been agreed that the concept will not roll out any further.

Simba Smoby to launch B-Kind dolls in the UK   An eco-conscious doll line designed to promote kindness, B-Kind has been well-received among consumers in the US and is now arriving at UK retailers. Built around compassion and kindness, Jada Toys’ B-Kind collection is making its US autumn/winter debut online and on-shelf exclusively at Walmart.

FAO Schwarz (UK) launches on M&S.com and in selected stores   Initially in 20 stores, the FAO Schwarz bespoke offering has been launched by 'Brands at M&S' in time for the festive season. The M&S store openings are the first time the heritage toy brand has been available on local UK high streets, with locations from Cardiff to Cheltenham included in the store roll out.

Moomin will be ramping up its offerings to fans throughout North America.  King Features Syndicate recently signed a deal with California clothing and accessories brand, Just Peachy, building on Moomin’s licensing program. Just Peachy will manufacture a line of Moomin-branded apparel, accessories, and novelty items — including hoodies, sweatshirts, bags, and woven throw blankets.

Hasbro will expand its line of Beyblade toys, inspired by the upcoming Beyblade Burst QuadDrive series premiering next month.  Season six of ADK Emotions NY Inc.’s Beyblade Burst series, Beyblade Burst QuadDrive debuts on Disney XD and DisneyNOW on December 4, 2021. It consists of 26 episodes that are 22 minutes each.  Among the new toys based on the series, Hasbro introduced the Beyblade Burst QuadDrive ...

Big G Creative announced that they will have seven titles included in Walgreens' first ever games endcaps, one of which is their upcoming Hangry game that releases in mid-November.  Big G will have a total of seven games featured in this new endcap:  Bluffaneer, Bob Ross: Happy Little Accidents, Kraft Heinz Variety Game Pack, Mega Mouth, Bye, Felicia!, their recently released No Filter, and Hangry. Hangry and No Filter...

(the above posted after November 16th)

UNO Championship Series Vegas Invitational Tournament Gets Wild.  Tonight, the 50th anniversary celebration of UNO enters a new phase as esports superstar Tyler “Ninja” Blevins gets wild as host of the special event that will crown the first-ever UNO World Champion. The event will stream live from the HyperX Esports Arena Las Vegas inside the Luxor Hotel & Casino.

Toys “R” US Launches NFT Collection.  Toys “R” Us is entering the blockchain, introducing a collection of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) featuring mascot Geoffrey the Giraffe. The digital collectibles become available for fans to purchase starting November 13. WHP, the Toys “R” Us parent company, partnered with NFT platform Ethernity to launch the collection on the digital marketplace Opensea.

YWOW Brands Officially Launches in the U.S.  Following early success and fast growth in international markets, YWOW Games has evolved into YWOW Brands for its official launch into the U.S. market. The company behind a large range of eco-friendly, officially licensed puzzles launched in 2018. Over the past year, YWOW Brands has grown to distribute its products in more than 50 markets around the world...

Big G Creative Launches 2 New Titles: Hangry and No Filter.  Families looking to revamp game night traditions can look for two new titles from Big G Creative that launched exclusively at Walgreens this week. Designed as an icebreaker game, No Filter is the ideal get-to-know-you game, while Hangry is an action-packed, food-themed card game

Mattel Television and Nickelodeon start production on the Monster High movie musical in Vancouver this month.  Monster High (working title) is a live-action television movie — based on Mattel’s franchise of the same name — anticipated to premiere on Nickelodeon in 2022. Additionally, a Monster High animated series will debut on Nickelodeon next year. 

Hasbro to Debut Live Holiday Shopping Event.  Hasbro Holiday Shopping Live will be broadcast November 12, offering consumers a showcase of Hasbro’s toys and brands for the holiday season.Consumers will be able to browse and purchase toys and games directly on the Hasbro Microsite. “We’ve planned a dynamic shopping experience that combines the fun of live video and the convenience of mobile shopping....

YouTube has announced the creator lineup for its first live shopping event next week, as it lays out a larger vision for on-platform shopping, which is being shaped by new global managing director for YouTube Shopping Bridget Dolan. YouTube’s first event touting its ecommerce tools, the Holiday Stream & Shop, kicks off on Nov. 15. During the weeklong event, creators will be selling new products at special discounts ...

Exploding Kittens has announced the relaunch of popular, fast-paced card game, Happy Salmon, recently acquired from North Star Games.

Designed by Quentin Weir and game developer Ken Gruhl, who has since joined the Exploding Kittens team as a senior game designer, the company has re-released Happy Salmon with an Exploding Kittens twist, featuring completely new artwork and an updated look.

Over the Rainbow – 50 years of Rainbow Designs.  Rainbow Designs’ MD Anthony Temple chats to Sam Giltrow about the evergreen appeal of the company’s classic characters and what lies ahead.  It’s been a big year for Rainbow Designs as the company celebrates its half century. Looking back on his achievements since acquiring the company, Anthony says probably his biggest was transforming the business model...

Jada Toys and Kindness.org to spread kindness with new partnership. The partnership will kick off with an Instagram Live event all about the importance of kids and kindness on Thursday 11th November. Jada Toys’ B-Kind doll line. Jada Toys, a global toy manufacturer and maker of the B-Kind doll line, and Kindness.org, a research-led non-profit dedicated to educating and inspiring people to choose to be kind....

The Lego Group launches new podcast with celebrity guests. At Your Leisure, Lego’s new podcast, asks which hobbies keep the stars entertained, what pastimes they’ve nurtured since childhood, and what they’ve picked up over lockdown. A new podcast from The Lego Group, aimed specifically at adults looking to explore the world of celebrity hobbies, pastimes and passions, is now available to stream from...

Mattel and Spain’s Mondo Toys have signed a multi-year partnership to launch a line of “clean” makeup products for Barbie, including a lipstick, three eyeshadows, a lip gloss, a makeup case and several bags. There was no information at press time on when the line would hit shelves, but Mattel said in a press release that additional products will follow in 2022. The toy giant said that the makeup is vegan, cruelty-free...

Bed Bath & Beyond launched a digital marketplace, where third-party sellers can now list a curated assortment of products in the baby and home categories. The marketplace will be integrated into the retailer’s digital platform. “Marketplace is yet another example of how we continue to redefine our business model,” said Bed Bath and Beyond pres/CEO Mark Tritton. “We are developing new avenues of L-T profitable...

Spin Master to launch BRAVE BUNNIES line of toys. Ukrainian creative production company Glowberry has appointed Spin Master as global master toy licensee for its BRAVE BUNNIES series. Expected to launch in 2022, Spin Master’s preschool toy line will include playsets, figures, plush, games and puzzles. The animated series, created by Glowberry in partnership with Spanish animation studio Anima, tells the story...

LEGO Star Wars Ultimate Collector Series AT-AT set is LEGO’s most expensive ever. LEGO has officially unveiled its massive 6,785 piece LEGO Star Wars Ultimate Collector Series AT-AT. Measuring over two feet in height and length, the iconic Imperial Walker from Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back comes with nine minifigures, with room to transport a troop of 40 Snowtroopers, and invades toy stores...

Incredible Novelties rebrands as Incredible Group with three new divisions. After nearly 20 years of growth, Incredible Novelties is rebranding and refocusing as The Incredible Group. The Canadian company will serve as the parent of three new divisions: Incredible Play, Incredible Novelties, and Incredible Incentives.  

Ares Games unveils new edition of 'Nanty Narking'Ares Games unveiled Nanty Narking Standard Edition, a streamlined version of the original board game, which will release into U.S. retail in November. The Deluxe Edition of Martin Wallace's mystery game is still available in the U.S. (see "'Nanty Narking'"), but for players who want a more affordable version, the Standard Edition is on the way. 

Plaid Hat Games unveils 'Familiar Tales'. Plaid Hat Games unveiled Familiar Tales, a cooperative deck-building game by Jerry Hawthorne, which will release in January 2022. In Familiar Tales, players take on the roles of a wizard’s familiars that have been given the job of saving and raising a princess. The familiars need to find ways of keeping her alive and away from the evil forces that are pursuing her.

Become a master word thief in 'Word Heist'Gamewright will release Word Heist, a new word guessing game, which will be coming in 2021 to retail stores. In Word Heist, players secretly make a word with the letters displayed in the gallery. They can earn bonuses for using featured letters, and meeting the parameters of the vault. 

Make the perfect blend of tea in 'Chai'. Roxley Games will release Chai, a tea merchant board game, into retail on December 1, 2021. In Chai, players assume the roles of a tea merchants at the market who are trying to win over customers by offering the perfect blend of tea. Players buy and collect ingredients to fill their customers’ orders, and collect coins as they successfully complete them. 

Arcane Wonders unleashes new 'Air, Land, and Sea' standalone game. Arcane Wonders unleashed Air, Land, and Sea: Critters at War, a card game, for release into retail on December 1. This standalone game has the same gameplay as the previous Air, Land, and Sea title. It is a quick card game that plays out in three different theaters of war. 

Libellud announces 'Stella - Dixit Universe'. Libellud announced Stella - Dixit Universe, a new standalone game, for release on December 3. The classic word-image association board game is adding another title to its growing line of games. This version introduces a new press-your-luck mechanic which allows players to interact with one another using their cards. 

Upper Deck unveils new 'Marvel Legendary' expansionUpper Deck unveiled Messiah Complex, a new expansion for Marvel Legendary, which will release in Q2 2022. This new Marvel Legendary expansion is based on the popular Marvel crossover story arc of the same name (see "'Astonishing X-Men: Second Stage'"). Players join the surviving mutant heroes, post-mutant decimation, and battle new Masterminds and Villains. 

'Pokemon TCG' shoots for the 'Brilliant Stars'. The Pokemon Company International will release Pokemon TCG: Sword & Shield - Brilliant Stars, a new expansion set, on February 25, 2022. This expansion will feature Pokemon VSTAR, which evolve from Pokemon V, and have their own VSTAR Power. VSTAR powers can be used once per game, and its use is noted by flipping a VSTAR marker during the battle. 

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Video Games, Gaming Hardware & Game Development News . . .

Netflix Games is available on your iPhone and iPad. Netflix just brought its new gaming service to all subscribers on Android, but now it has officially come to iOS. The service gives users access to a limited selection of mobile games without ads or in-app purchases. A tweet from Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman confirms that the five launch games are already available as individual downloads from the App Store. 

Forza Horizon 5 is finally stealing the show for Microsoft. The latest game in the open world spin-off series, and the 13th Forza game over all, Forza Horizon 5 is a mostly known quantity. But nearly a decade after the Horizon series started, it feels like many are encountering it for the first time. 

Steam Deck delayed, Valve apologizes. Valve has delayed the release of its Steam Deck handheld by several months, it announced in a statement today. The anticipated handheld will now start rolling out in February 2022, pushed back from an initial December release. “We’re sorry about this—we did our best to work around the global supply chain issues, but due to material shortages, components aren’t reaching ...

Activision Blizzard is offering better pay to contractors after worker pressure. Contractors at Activision Blizzard got some great news yesterday about their upcoming holiday plans. After intense pushback from salaried employees, the company and its contracting partners will now be offering contractors paid time off for the holiday period, as well as expanded sick days and an increased minimum hourly rate. 

Ubisoft to raise pay across its Canadian studios to retain key talent. Ubisoft is increasing wages across its Canadian studios in a bid to retain key talent. As reported by Kotaku, however, some employees are worried the wage bump will reinforce existing inequalities at the company, which has come under fire over the past 18 months after a wave of serious misconduct and harassment allegations. 

FunCraft and Sanrio partner for new mobile game Hello Kitty – Merge Town. Interactive entertainment company and mobile games publisher FunCraft, together with Sanrio, has announced the global launch of Hello Kitty – Merge Town, a puzzle and merge decoration game that brings a renowned cast of characters and town to life for the ultimate Hello Kitty and Friends gaming experience.

Videogame business holding up even as pandemic wanes. NPD reported that U.S. consumer spending on videogames increased 7% in the third quarter to a record $13.3 billion as the business showed a resilience that allayed concerns of a slowdown in a post-pandemic world.

Activision Blizzard and Electronic 

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Toy Safety & Counterfeit Related Articles . . .

Toy safety: Holiday shoppers urged to avoid knock-off products, unfamiliar retailers. Experts are warning parents and families to be aware of where their kids’ toys are coming from this holiday season to help avoid any toy-related injuries. With some toys in short supply amid pandemic-related shipping and supply chain issues, shoppers might turn to unfamiliar online retailers to get gifts in time for the holidays -- but...

Australia: Calls for more testing after asbestos found in imported toys and building materials. Unions and anti-asbestos campaigners are demanding more testing at Australia's border after revelations the deadly mineral is still slipping into the country despite a strict ban. Since the start of last year, foreign asbestos has been found in imported building materials, remote control cars, engine gaskets, billiard table ...

How common are toy-related injuries? Parents go to great lengths to ensure the safety of their children. Safety is a significant factor when purchasing toys for kids, but how common are toy-related injuries? According to the National SAFE KIDS Campaign and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 215,000 children are treated for toy-related injuries in emergency rooms across the United States...

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Highlighted Press Releases . . . 

NORTH POLE APPLAUDS TOYMAKER’S MISSION TO FIX SUPPLY CHAIN JAM IN THE NICK OF “TYME” Beloved Ty Beanie Babies Continually Airlifted to O’Hare From Overseas for Affordable ($5 -$10) And Cuddly Christmas or Hanukkah Gift Giving Oak Brook, IL (November 16, 2021) Ty Warner, owner of the largest manufacturer of soft toys in the world, has financed more than 150 air shipment flights since October, and the shipments continue. With typical cargo flight costing anywhere from $1.5 to $2 million dollars, business pages are full of articles about the exorbitant cost of shipping sparking price increases. That is not the case with Ty as they are proceeding without any price increases (https://shop.ty.com/).

GIFTWRAPPING CREATIVITY, EMPATHY & CURIOSITY IN ONE BOX–EEBOO IS THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING.  Here’s A Top 5 Gift List To Inspire! Click On eeBoo.com For Every Age And Stage Of Life For Female Founded And Sustainably Sourced Puzzles, Games, Toys & Gifts.  New York, NY (November 15, 2021) – Holidays conjure up memories of children, parents and grandparents gathered together playing games or doing puzzles as a family. Gifting an educational game or puzzle from eeBoo (eeBoo.com) will inspire creativity and curiosity today and because their products are so sturdily crafted of heavy recycled board, they can be handed down from family to family.

(the above posted after November 12th)

TIP OFF WITH NBA MATH HOOPS APP TO MASTER MATH FLUENCY (WITHOUT THE SWEAT!).For kids that follow the game of basketball, stats like Turnover Differential, Rebound Margin, or Free Throw Differential seem to roll off their tongues. Tracking and recording stats is a great way to introduce students to the relevance of math in the real world, and to reinforce core skills that they learn in the classroom! Points, rebounds, and steals can take on a whole new meaning when presented in a math class, and player stats and the thrill of competition offer a way for elementary and middle schoolers to develop confidence with math. That “ah-ha” moment can help jumpstart a lifelong enthusiasm for learning.

WRAP UP A PRESENT THAT MOONLIGHTS AS A TREASURED BEDTIME RITUAL.  Ho Ho Whoa! Four New Storybook Gift Packs That Illuminate On The Bedroom Ceiling (Or Wherever Tots Might Fall Asleep): Frozen, Mickey, Ryan & Winnie.  St. Louis, MO (November 11, 2021) – Finding a holiday gift for a child can be as easy as picking up an illustrated storybook like Winnie The Pooh. But even A.A. Milne would be impressed if Winnie and Eeyore and Piglet had adventures that were flashed across the bedroom ceiling as a parent read aloud the classic tales. Moonlite Gift Packs ($39.99) makes a wow gift that instills literacy and a modern spin on a bedtime ritual. Instead of flipping the pages, parents project the story above the child’s bed as they lull to sleep with a story and a loving tuck in bed.

WE HAVE YOUR WOW GIFT FOR EVERY CHILD: XMAS ARRIVES AGAIN & AGAIN WITH SUBSCRIPTION STEM KITS. Plus Keep Preschoolers Busy On Thanksgiving Day Concocting Turkey Windchimes Or Beaded Corn With New Sensory Art Kits. Is there an expression for an irresistible urge to pinch or squeeze something or someone that is unbearably cute? Yes! Entrepreneur Michelle Davis discovered GIGIL, a Tagalog word, was exactly the right name for her subscription STEM and Creative Kits where everything (and we mean everything!) is delivered to your mailbox each month. It’s like Christmas or a birthday present arriving every few weeks instead of once a year. And the incredible benefits of exploring new concepts in childhood last a lifetime! Holiday shopping for every child on your list can be done with one click at www.GIGILSTEMKits.com.

News from Associations, Trade Shows, Awards, Events & Festivals . . . 

Bill Nye to Cut Opening Ceremony Ribbon at Toy Fair New York. Bill Nye the Science Guy is coming to Toy Fair! On Feb. 19, Nye will help kick off Toy Fair New York at the ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9 a.m., taking place at the Crystal Palace 3B entrance of the Javits Center. The Toy Association is hinting that more special guests may show up on the Toy Fair show floor.

Children's Emmys get a standalone competition  Along with breaking off from the Daytime Emmys, new categories in animation may be added in response to record growth in kids and family entries, says Adam Sharp. With kids and family content entries increasing by 23% over the last two years—making it the fastest-growing daytime awards genre in that period—the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) is...

Inspire the Next Generation of Licensing Professionals.  The Licensing International Scholarship Program awards grants between $2,500 and $10,000 (or local equivalent) to deserving individuals who are interested in a career in brand licensing seeking education in business, e-commerce, marketing, design, engineering, entrepreneurial studies and other brand licensing industry-related programs.

(posted after November 12th)

2021 TOY & GAME INTERNATIONAL EXCELLENCE AWARDS ANNOUNCE COMMITTEE SELECTED AWARD RECIPIENTS.  Lifetime Achievement, Game Changers of the Year, and Hassenfeld Family Initiatives Humanitarian Award to be Honored at Virtual TAGIE Ceremony on November 19, 2021. 

Lifetime Achievement:

  • Tom Kalinske,  Executive Chairman at Mixed Dimensions and former CEO of Sega America, Leapfrog and Mattel

  • Michele Litzky, Founder of Litzky Public Relations (LPR) 

  • The Pressman Family, Accepted by Jim Pressman, Past President of The Pressman Toy Company

Hassenfeld Family Initiatives Humanitarian Award:

  • Jan-Maurits Duparc, Chief Creation at Identity Games

Game changers of the year:

  • Megan Kanous, Director of Business Development, PSI

  • Azhelle Wade, The Toy Coach Podcast Season II

  • Josslynne Welch and Litzky PR, President of Litzky PR

The 2022 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards announced 114 finalists in 16 categories this week. Consumers can vote on their favorites now through January 4, 2022.  The TOTY Awards introduced a new category this year, ‘Grown-Up Toy of the Year,’ which highlights party games, board games, collectibles, arts and crafts, and other play products geared towards grown-ups and “kidults.” 

Spring Fair set for success with 90% of stand space sold. Organisers Hyve Group say the floorplan for the 2022 show could be increased to accommodate more potential exhibitors. This year’s Autumn Fair, held in September. Following the highest ever re-book at this year’s Autumn Fair, 90% of the stand space for February’s Spring Fair is already sold, with organisers Hyve Group looking to increase the floorplan...

Applications now open for 2021 Toy Retailer of the Year awards. The winners of the awards, which this year welcome a new category for omnichannel retailers, will be announced at the Toy Industry Awards Evening at London Toy Fair. The British Toy & Hobby Association, organisers of the Toy Retailer of the Year Awards, has announced that the 2021 retailer application process is now open.

People of Play (POP) announced their official schedule for the Virtual POP Week, running from November 15 - 20, 2021.  The week includes The Toy & Game International Innovation Summit, POP Duo Keynotes Legends & Leaders, Networking in the POP Pub Rooms, Entertainment on the Fair Stages, TAGIE Awards, and Young Inventors Challenge.  “Our 2021 program is turning out to be one of the most innovative  we’ve ever had,” said Mary Couzin, CEO and founder of the Chicago Toy & Game Week (CHITAG). “We’re bringing our  industry and other entertainment industries together in new and exciting ways to share ideas and cross pollinate.  We’re creating network opportunities, bringing in the highest caliber of diverse speakers we’ve ever had and awarding deserving companies and kids with both the TAGIE awards  and Young Inventor’s Challenge as well as stages of entertainment at the Fair.  There’s something for everyone.”

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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.

Douglas Thomson The Toy Association reports that Douglas Thomson, former president of the Toy Manufacturers of America (TMA) — the organization that became The Toy Association — has died.  The Bronx-born executive joined the TMA as president in 1978 and led the organization in consumer safety and policy, public relations, and philanthropy. He was also a founder of the Fashion Institute of Technology’s (FIT) Toy Design Department. Thomson died at his Savannah, Georgia home on Oct. 22 at the age of 97. 

According to The Toy Association, Thomson’s family is encouraging donations to be made to the Dartmouth College Fund in his name.

Jerry Houle passes at age 76.One of the pioneers of modern brand licensing and merchandising business, and one of eight founders of the world’s first professional licensing association which evolved into LIMA (now Licensing International), passed away on October 27 at age 76.

After stints at Fisher-Price and Milton Bradley, Jerry joined Jim Henson’s Muppets in March 1977 as its first marketing person and 25th employee. The MUPPET SHOW had launched the previous fall in 103 countries. Houle founded 7 divisions for the company, including worldwide licensing. In 1984, he founded his own agency, Bliss House, Inc., whose clients included Curious George, Chaplin, Monty Python, Princess Diana, General Motors, Survivor, Babar, among many others.

He also created and taught an MBA-level course on Licensing at Babson College, and spoke widely on licensing at events around the world.

He’s survived by his wife Margaret “Peggy” Houle;  sons Jerome L. Houle IV, William Fairfield Houle and James Lowther White Houle and their families, including six grandchildren; brothers Thomas Houle and Daniel Houle; and sisters Marybeth Donovan and Maureen Wiekert.

Malcolm Rose - He enjoyed a long and distinguished career in the toy trade.  His first role in toys was with Angel Toys, which he joined in the mid 60s. He then went on to hold several senior roles in the industry; as well as his tenure at Angel Toys, Malcolm lent his expertise to Illco, Tyco-Matchbox and Mookie Toys, among others.

His last full-time role was as sales director at Mookie Toys, where, over a 10-year period, he played an instrumental part in the growth of the business and its establishment as a pre-eminent force in the outdoor toy market, both in the UK and internationally. Malcolm formally retired from Mookie in 2005, but continued to work for a number of years on a consultancy basis, firstly for Top Banana Toys and then with Kelly Richardson at Kyria.

Remembering Malcolm, Andrew Moulsher of Top Banana Toys said: “Malcolm was hugely respected by both the buyers he dealt with and his co-workers. He had a reputation as a straight talker, always showing great integrity and was never afraid to give a retail buyer the benefit of his experience if he thought they were making a less than judicious buying decision. In the main, they appreciated this and respected him all the more for it. He certainly had a significant impact on my own career development, and I shall miss him enormously.”

Affectionately known as “Grumps” by his family and many of his colleagues, Malcolm is survived by his wife Sandra, children Simon and Jo and grandchildren Sophie and Sam.

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People and companies are registering and new features are being added by the minute... what are you waiting for? We've got the most powerful platform in our industry! Join here:  www.peopleofplay.com 
 

Weekly Top Stories from Toy and Game Trade Magazines Worldwide . . . 

 

Toy Trade Monthly Issues​​

Adventure Media & Events (US)

aNb Media (US)

  1. TOTY Awards Unveil 2022 Finalists 

  2. Hasbro to Debut Live Holiday Shopping Event

  3. Game Night in a Can 5th Anniversary, Frequent Flyer Board Game, & More New Products

  4. Mattel & Nick Start Production on Monster High Movie

  5. Toys "R" US Launches NFT Collection 

  6. Build-A-Bear Furthers Digital Transformation with New Hires

  7. Donkey Hodie Taps Jada Toys as Master Toy Licensee

  8. ShopTalk Episode 16: Taste Beauty President Alex Fogelson

  9. Karma's World Signs New License Partners

  10. Jada Toys Celebrates World Kindness Day on Nov. 13

ToyWorld (UK)

  1. A Festive Frenzy… it’s the Friday Blog!

  2. Toys R Us UK opens web page for prospective employees

  3. Spin Master unveils strong Q3 results

  4. Good news for US toy companies – Trans-Pacific ocean freight rates show initial signs of easing

  5. Exclusive: Touching Base with leading licensors

  6. Exclusive: It’s good to be back! BLE update

  7. Exclusive: Universally speaking with Paul Bufton

  8. Toy of the Year Awards 2022 finalists revealed

  9. Applications now open for 2021 Toy Retailer of the Year awards

  10. Exclusive: Fab-yule-ous! Here’s Talking Shop

ICv2: The Business of Geek Culture's (US)

Diamond, Alliance Hit by Ransomware Attack
Joe Manganiello's Celebrity 'D&D' Campaign Featured in Upcoming WizKids' Miniatures Sets
'Magic: The Gathering's' Standard Set Sales Slide
Wizards of the Coast Updates 'The List'
New 'Magic: The Gathering' 'D&D' Miniatures Starter Sets Incoming
Rolling for Initiative -- Have We Bought Too Much Stuff? Probably.
All Hail 'D&D's' 'Lolth, the Spider Queen!'
Square Enix Drops 'Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood' Board Game
Funko Says More Collectible Games, First to Market with 'Squid Game', Adding Pre-orders to DTC
Gifts Week: Sell Now, Gift Later

Nación Juguetes (Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Chile & Spain)

TOYS Magazine (Germany) - posted once a month

The Bugg Report (Australia)

Edition 39

Casual Game Revolution

News Flash: Familiar Tales Announced, Trails Released, Plaid Hat Games has announced Familiar Tales, Keymaster Games has released Trails, and People of Play (POP) is hosting daily virtual events.

Video of the Week! 

Hidden Role Podcast: Tim Walsh Invented Tri-Bond!

What makes a good name for a game? Where do good ideas come from? How do you make a game accessible? Tim Walsh, writer and inventor of Tri-Bond, Mega Mouth, and Blurt! has some theories and stories that shed some light on those questions and more.

Meme of the Week!

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Thank you for being a reader of the Bloom Report. — Mary and Graeme

 

Founding Editor and Publisher (1998-2020, Retired): Philip Bloom

We are honored to carry on Phil's 22 year legacy and continue the Bloom Report. Phil has been a mensch

and we've loved working with him. Here is a fun and interesting interview with Phil.

If you would like to reach Phil: philip.bloom100@verizon.net   

Publisher: Mary Couzin, Chicago Toy & Game Group, Inc.

Managing Editor: Graeme Thomson

Assistant Editor: Patrick Fisher

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