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Welcome to Your Weekly News Brief!

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Happy Bloomin' Friday! 


Know why Dave Harris (2022 sponsor Mattel), Jaz Darden, Ahren Hoffman (2022 sponsor Crazy Aarons), David Norman (then sponsor Goliath), Alicia Alexander (then YIC Director), Dan Klitsner (Judge/Mentor) and Ken Johnson (Judge/Mentor) are all so happy? They are cultivating the next generation of toy and game people! Please join them and help us build the future of Toy Nation by either being a mentor, a judge, or a sponsor of our Young Inventor Challenge. We need you! The kids need you! The toy industry needs you!


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POP Week is November 1st- 5th! 


Once you’ve got your POP Week plans locked up, our LA Previews Directory is ready! We also have a block of hotel suites for your convenience! 

Thank you for reading the Bloom Report here or on the Bloom Report 24/7 News Feed!


  • The BLOOM REPORT is fantastic and it allows me to stay on top of all the breaking news in the Toy industry! - Wai Or, Longshore Ltd.

  • “I seriously look forward to each Friday to learn most every update + more in the Industry. Priceless info! Thank you” -Michael Kohner, The Michael Kohner Corporation

  • "TBR is required reading for: inventors, manufacturers, retailers, marketers, suppliers, absolutely everyone!" - Robert Fuhrer, Founder, NEXTOY

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Person of the Week - All Things Equal's Eric Poses


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In 1997, I drove around the country (at the age of 23) for 16 weeks with a carload of my first board game invention, Loaded Questions®. At each stop, I would demo my game for local game stores and call on local media to cover my story. By the end of the trip, Loaded Questions was featured in many of the top dailies and available at dozens of the country’s top specialty game stores.


Fast-forward 26 years…


On the eve of me embarking on yet another sales & marketing adventure to promote my new Loaded Questions Greatest Hits game (and all my other family/party games), I started reflecting on the many personal and cultural differences between my initial road trip and the start of tomorrow’s trip, dubbed “The Mid-Life Crisis Tour”. For example, one of the stores I sold to in 1997 was a popular Seattle-based game store chain called “Turn Off The TV”. I realized that store today would likely be called “Put Down Your Phone”. The Internet was in its infancy. There was no smart phone. Bill Cosby was America’s dad. It was a simpler time.

While I’m sure my time on the road will reveal a number of other differences, here are 10 that came to mind before I finish packing, sending out last minute emails, and trying to get a new night’s sleep before I become a traveling salesman these next six weeks.


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Person of the week - Mark Setteducati, World renowned magician and inventor, magically gives us PEOPLE OF PLAY (click on the arrow below)! And... Mark has generously agreed to perform magic at the TAGIE Awards this year!  (Thank you, Mark!)

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Cartoon Lovers, Lexophiles & People in Need of a Smile! 

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Cartoon of the Week: Thank you, Bob Fuhrer, for this week's cartoon! 

Lexophile Lovers:  "Yesterday, a clown held the door open for me. It was such a nice jester." Thank you, Jerry Cleary for sharing with our readers! 

"Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships." - Michael Jordan

"Toys are the seeds from which the tree of creativity grows. Nourish them well, and watch imagination bloom." - Pleasant Rowland, founder of American Girl

Have a cartoon, quote or a joke to share with your colleagues? Send it to me!  Mary


Financial and Legal

Getting toys on shelves at mass-market retailers is harder than ever, but Spin Master, Funko and BBC Studios are all successfully tapping into dollar stores, specialty retailers and DTC to sell consumer products. One of the primary goals of every toyco is getting its new products stocked at big-box retailers, but the retail landscape has changed dramatically post-pandemic. Walmart, Target and Costco are more...

Disney and Comcast move up Hulu sale talks with valuation likely ‘way more’ than US$27.5bn”. The sale of Hulu has been a constant source of discussion over the past year in the US, with Disney owning 66% of The Handmaid’s Tale streamer and NBCUniversal parent Comcast holding the other 33%. A put-call deal struck in 2019 will come into effect in January 2024, through which Disney can force Comcast to sell its 33%...


***The above posted after September 1st when tBR sent***


Workers at WildBrain’s animation studio in Vancouver, one of Canada’s biggest such facilities, are aiming to form a union. Hundreds of workers (the studio employs more than 800 artists, according to WildBrain) have already signed union support cards, says the Canadian Animation Guild (CAG), IATSE Local 938. CAG announced the move last night on X (formerly Twitter). 

The WGA strike has reached the upper echelon of overall deals at Warner Bros. Television Group. Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that the studio has suspended a number of overall deals for its top creatives including J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot (Duster), Greg Berlanti (Superman & Lois), Chuck Lorre (Bob Hearts Abishola), Bill Lawrence (Shrinking), John Wells (Maid), Mindy Kaling (Sex Lives of College Girls).

SAG-AFTRA, the actor’s union which has been striking film and tv productions since July 14, is now looking at a second strike against video game companies. Its national board has voted unanimously to send a strike authorization vote to its 160,000-person membership in preparation of the union’s forthcoming bargaining dates with signatory video game companies.

China. Country Garden: Property shares jump on debt reprieve. Shares in Chinese property firms have jumped after developer Country Garden reportedly secured an extension to a key debt payment deadline. Major home builders including Country Garden and Evergrande saw their shares rise in HK on Mon. Investors also welcomed moves by Beijing to step up its support for the faltering economy. 

China exports fall again as economy struggles. China's exports have dropped for fourth month in a row as the "world's factory" struggles with weak demand at home and abroad. Exports fell 8.8% in August compared with a year earlier, while imports dropped 7.3%, official figures show. However, those declines were not as bad as expected and an improvement on the previous month. 


Australia gas strike delayed until Friday as talks continue. A strike planned to start at two major liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities in Australia has been delayed as talks between Chevron and unions continue. The series of work stoppages were due to start from Thursday in the dispute over pay and conditions. Workers will now delay their strike action until 06:00 on Friday Perth time (22:00 GMT Thursday). 


SAG-AFTRA: AI "equal or even greater threat" to video game performers. In a letter issued to SAG-AFTRA members, president Fran Drescher and executive director Duncan Crabtree-Ireland called artificial intelligence "an equal or even greater threat to performers in the video game industry than it does in film and television." One of SAG-AFTRA's demands is for actors to have the ability to give informed consent...


Board game designer duo charged in Gen Con theft of Magic: The Gathering cards worth $300,000. Two board game designers have been charged with allegedly stealing an approximate $300,000 worth of Magic: The Gathering cards from a vendor attending Gen Con’s annual tabletop convention. The Marion County Prosecutor’s Office in Indianapolis, Indiana announced on September 5th..



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Financial Reporting

WildBrain year-end revenue jumps 5%, driven by CPLG growth. The company generated US$393 million in revenue from its licensing and content businesses last year, and is building towards a location-based entertainment push for 2024.

***The above posted after September 8th***


Mattel’s Windfall From ‘Barbie’. “Barbie” is close to grossing $1.4 billion and passed one of the “Harry Potter” movies as the top-grossing Warner Bros. film of all time. It could end up near the $2 billion mark. (The record-holder is 2009’s “Avatar,” at $2.9 billion.) Mattel and Warner have jealously guarded their financial arrangements. But people with knowledge of their agreement said Mattel earned 5 percent of the box office revenue, as well as a percentage of eventual profits as a producer of the movie and additional payments as owner of the Barbie intellectual property rights. At $2 billion in box office revenue, that amounts to $100 million. In addition, there are sales of merchandise connected to the movie as well as an expected boost in sales of dolls. Representatives for Mattel and Warner declined to comment on the financial arrangements, though the company’s chief financial officer said at a conference that the company would make about $125 million in total billings from the film.

GameStop collectible sales plummet as company cuts loss in latest quarter. GameStop collectible sales dropped dramatically in its fiscal Q2 ended July 29, 2023, as the company cut its loss on a slight overall sales increase. Sales in GameStop’s collectibles category, which includes tabletop games, dropped 24% to $169,.8 million vs. $223.2 million in the year ago quarter. 

Warner Bros. Discovery Says Ongoing Strikes Will Mean $300M-$500M Hit to 2023 Earnings. "The co. now expects to exceed $1.7 billion in free cash flow for the 3rd qtr of 2023, in part due to the strong performance of 'Barbie' as well as incremental impact from strike-related factors," 

Pat Avenue reports Hama brand up 60%



Trends, Lists, Market Research, and State of the Industry

Amazon reveals the 2023 Toys We Love list, including 200 toys from brands like LEGO, Mattel, Magna-Tiles, and Disney. The list also features more than 100 new toys and more than 80 toys found exclusively at Amazon.

TTPM Kicks off the Holiday Season with the 2023 Most Wanted List

The 18th annual Toy Insider holiday gift guide features the best toys, games, and gifts for every kid on your list! 


UK kids content spend remains flat in Pact’s latest census data


AUGUST 2023 CIRCANA BOOKSCAN - TOP 20 ADULT GRAPHIC NOVELS  New Young-Readers Manga Debuts in the Top 20


***The above posted after September 8th***


A look at pre-Christmas marketing. Toy World looks at how the marketing space continues to evolve and how toy companies can ensure they’re continuing to reach kids where they watch and play.


Sales activity for French animation dropped by 5.3% to US$61.7 million in 2022

Kidcos are getting all the feels for ASMR. You know those videos where creators whisper to the camera and you get a tingle down your spine? Well, that’s a hot trend with kids, and the industry is tuning in.

U.S. Advertising Forecast to Rise 5 Percent in 2023, But National TV Faces “Existential Crisis”



TCGPLAYER TOP 25 SEALED PRODUCTS (WITH PRICE SHIFTS) - AUGUST 2023 'Pokemon TCG: Obsidian Flames' Booster Box Wins the Top Slot


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Stories, Comments, and Advice


A Constantly Rebooting Children’s Franchise That’s Actually Good. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem is one of the summer’s surprise hits, highlighting the unlikely endurance of the wisecracking reptiles. In 1984, the comic-book artists Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird created Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a dark and snarky satire starring the cartoonish crime fighters. Then, in 1987, Eastman and Laird licensed...

He’s Been Barbie’s Boyfriend For 62 Years. Is That Enough To Get Ken In The Toy Hall Of Fame? The hugely popular Barbie movie may do something for the Ken doll that 60-plus years on toy store shelves couldn’t do: Get him into the National Toy Hall of Fame. The Ken doll is one of 12 iconic toys named as finalists for induction into the The Strong’s National Toy Hall of Fame, in Rochester, N.Y. 

Saturday morning cartoons died on this day in 1992. So long, Smurfs. Adios, Alvin and the Chipmunks. Hello, "Saved by the Bell." If you were a kid in the 1980s, you'll remember this hallowed ritual. Every Saturday morning, you'd wake up at the crack of dawn (yes, even though school wasn't in session), pour yourself a heaping bowl of sugar-laden cereal (preferably of the Ralston-Purina variety — the Donkey Kong box was...

YouTuber Max Fosh had a viral moment on Saturday when he pulled at a reverse Uno card during the Sidemen FC charity soccer game. In footage from the game during the 78th minute, Premier League and FIFA referee Mark Clattenburg gave Fosh, who played for the YouTube All-Stars, a yellow card, and Fosh responded by taking out a green reverse Uno card. Players on both sides and fans in London Stadium cheered...

***The above posted after September 7th***


American toy store owner Rick Derr reports back to Toy World readers following his Certified Play Expert training. In April, Rick’s column spoke about the lack of tackling child mental health issues in the toy industry. In turn, he decided to complete ASTRA’s Certified Play Expert training. In this month’s column, he tells our readers what the training entailed and why he thinks it’s so important. He comments: “Based on my experience, I will be sending other key team members to take the Certified Play Expert training in person, and my team member Jamie...


John Baulch, Toy World - Enough is enough … it’s the Friday Blog! I read an article recently which put forward the theory that the British have stopped complaining when things go wrong – the gist was that things fall apart (metaphorically and, in the case of schools, literally) so often in ‘Broken Britian’ these days that people have simply not got the energy to keep getting angry about every little thing. 


Wild Barbie Theory Suggests 1 Important Human Character Is Actually A Doll. One theory suggests that Will Ferrell's Barbie character, the Mattel CEO, is actually an Allan doll who left Barbieland to live in the real world.  This theory is supported by plot details such as the Mattel CEO's familiarity with Barbieland and his manner of climbing over walls.  The idea of the Mattel CEO being an Allan doll is a great twist for Barbie 2...

This summer’s blockbuster “Barbie” has made it to Russia despite not being officially released there due to the war in Ukraine, and it seems Barbiemania has infatuated many Russians even as the movie draws condemnation from officials. “Barbie” distributor Warner Bros., which is owned by CNN’s parent company Warner Bros. Discovery, was among the Western studios to pull out of Russia after its full-scale invasion of...

Indian toy industry can learn from expertise of G20 members to boost manufacturing. Learning from China's expertise in mass production, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness can contribute to the growth and competitiveness of India's toy manufacturing industry. xpertise of G20 member countries such as the US and China can help the Indian toy industry boost domestic manufacturing capabilities and exports …


The Toy Book Top 10: The hottest stories of August 2023. It’s officially September, and that means The Toy Book is hitting the rewind button and taking a look back at some of the hottest stories of August 2023, as chosen by you, the readers. Despite launching toward the end of the month, our Playbill-sized Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards Special Edition dominated in terms of pure traffic as the toy industry...


Starfield creator on 'choice anxiety', long games and exclusive titles. "I had a moment of realization of just how much we'd have to design, there's a lot of space in space!" Todd Howard, game director of Skyrim and Fallout 4, is speaking to the BBC ahead of the launch of his most ambitious project to date. Starfield is a sprawling space epic, giving players the freedom to navigate the stars in search of action and adventure. 

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History and Nostalgia


Barbie’s Keys to Fame Game from Mattel (1963). In the Barbie’s Keys to Fame Game from Mattel, players explored career aspirations. Two to 6 players collected points while vying to complete one or more of 8 possible Barbie career choices (including one selected as their dream career). The spin-and-move game featured a round game board with a center spinner, 8 pockets, and holders for 8 gold keys to fame. 


Super Helmet Seven from Topper Toys (1965). In 1965, Topper Toys released Super Helmet Seven, electronic headgear that allowed kids to mimic “men of action”, like jet pilots, skydivers, and race car drivers — a claim the company featured in its advertising campaigns. The “7” in Super Helmet Seven was a reference to the seven safety features built into the helmet’s all-plastic and shock-resistant core.

18 toys from infomercials that we coveted as kids. For years, our Saturday morning cartoons were interrupted by cheesy commercials that sold chintzy products that we just had to have. It’s likely that no one you knew had the toy that was being promoted, but something about that big red “As Seen on TV” logo made it undeniably covetable. 

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Licensing and Entertainment 


A classic board game just got cheesier — literally. Babybel and Hasbro have teamed up to launch Babybel Goodness Land, a cheesy twist on the classic Candy Land. In this version of the classic board game, players take on the role of Babybel cheese as they make their way across the board from the Field of Flavors to Irresisti-bel Island. 


Hasbro, and the Natural History Museum have come together to release a new line of clothing and merchandise inspired by “Peppa Pig” – available exclusive to F&F at Tesco supermarkets in the U.K.  “As we celebrate Hasbro’s 100th anniversary this year and lead into ‘Peppa Pig’s’ 20th in 2024, we want to bring our littlest fans in on the fun with collaborations that foster creativity, adventure and a love of...

Falcon’s Beyond has announced its debut project as part of its joint venture with Raging Power Limited, an arm of K11 Group, the Hong Kong-based cultural commerce giant. Through their joint venture, these two trailblazers in entertainment and retail, respectively, are expected to collaborate to develop and launch new entertainment franchises and location-based entertainment (LBE) attractions across China.

London-based distributor CAKE has partnered with Canadian studio Squeeze Productions to manage sales worldwide for its new CG-animated family series Cracké Family Scramble. Sans dialogue, the 52 x seven-minute comedy based on Squeeze’s short-form series Cracké (52 x one minute) centers on an ostrich taking care of his eight wild kids.

“Goosebumps,” the Disney+ series based on R.L. Stine’s popular book series of the same name, has set a Friday the 13th premiere date for this fall. The adaptation will launch Oct. 13 on both Disney+ and Hulu with the first five episodes of the series running as part of Disney+’s “Hallowstream” and Hulu’s “Huluween” celebrations. Subsequent installments of the 10-episode series will release weekly.

Jurassic World Alive announces in-game collaboration with Mattel featuring Jurassic Park ’93 classic action figure collection. Blockbuster geo-location and AR-based mobile game Jurassic World Alive and Mattel have partnered for an in-game collaboration featuring Mattel’s Jurassic Park ’93 Classic Action Figure Collection starring the iconic hero, the T. rex, as originally seen 30 years ago in the epic 1993'''


That TMNT Movie was so successful it’s getting a video game sequel. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are in the midst of a comeback of sorts, or at least a little renaissance. Nickelodeon’s big summer animated film, TMNT: Mutant Mayhem, is getting a video game tie-in set in the movie’s universe that promises to combine the film’s “bold, painterly art style” with a funny story and “energetic ninja teamwork.” 

Polestar and Mattel partner for Polestar Design Contest, future cars. Hot Wheels continues its quest to partner with iconic car brands across the globe! Polestar is a Swedish car brand that got its start in 1996 and is now known for its focus on electric cars. The company recently hosted the Polestar Design Contest 2022, with the winning car getting its own full-size model. 


Disney tells Charter subscribers to consider Hulu with live TV option. The battle between Charter Communications and Walt Disney, spurred due to cord-cutting, is now getting very tangled. Charter suggested last week that it might be ready to cut Disney networks from its programming lineup after the two companies reached an impasse in talks to extend their carriage contract Now Disney is hinting...


Marvel delays seven Disney+ series, one stays; Hammer Films acquired. Geek Showbiz Round-Up Hollywood was mostly shut down for vacations and the holiday, but there was some significant TV and movie news, which we round up here. Marvel Studios has pushed back the release dates of 7 Disney+ TV shows due to the dual strikes currently paralyzing Hollywood and a general scaling-back by Disney+...


Lorcana’s latest story reveal teases more of the lore behind the Disney TCG. With Disney Lorcana finally seeing its full release today, the trading card game’s debut set The First Chapter is also looking to tease more details about how so many familiar Disney characters - and some less familiar ones, too - ended up in the same place. 

Hasbro Marvel Legends honors The Infinity Saga with new figures. Hasbro Marvel Legends unveiled 8 new figures inspired by iconic appearances from heroes in Marvel Studios’ The Infinity Saga. The new figures include Black Widow, Bruce Banner, Captain America, Marvel’s War Machine, Spider-Man, Thor and two different Iron Man armors (Mark II and Mark 46). 


Barbie retail tour. Toy World took to the road in a pink Barbie London taxi with Mattel’s Michael Hick, Kelly Philp and Eirian Allen to check out retail installations Mattel has been working on. In the aftermath of one of the biggest pop culture moments of the year, the hugely anticipated release of the Barbie movie, John Baulch and Rachael Simpson-Jones, along with members of the Mattel UK team...

Nikko Toys has announced a new licensing agreement with Brandand Limited to produce select models from the highly successful motorsport division of Toyota Motor Corporation. This exciting collaboration will see the development and release of a new line of licensed radio control cars inspired by the Toyota Gazoo Racing high-performance vehicles competing in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)...


Princess Sam Consumer Products appoints IMC Licensing as agent for Tara Duncan in multiple markets. Princess Sam Consumer Products (PSCP) has announced that it has appointed a licensing agent for the children’s animated adventure-comedy-fantasy hit Tara Duncan in multiple territories across Latin America and the Caribbean. 


Stray, that cute cat game from last year, is getting an animated movie. Annapurna has plans to turn more of its popular games into feature films. Last year, the internet and gamers went wild over Stray, a platformer about a lone cat wandering around a futuristic city. Now, Annapurna’s animation studio is actively developing an animated film based on 2022’s most famous cat game. 


Monster High partners with Razzamataz Theatre Schools. Monster High has partnered with Razzamataz Theatre Schools to create a program that will encourage students to embrace their unique selves. This autumn, students from the multi-award-winning Razzamataz franchise of theatre schools will be introduced to the world of Monster High and its characters Clawdeen Wolf, Draculaura...


Winning Moves partners with Jazwares on Squishmallows range. The collection from Winning Moves will include  Squishmallows Top Trumps, Top Trumps Match! and Monopoly featuring Cam the Cat, styled on Mr Monopoly. Utilising key licensing relationships with Hasbro and Jazwares, and with a continued focus on product innovation, Winning Moves has announced the launch of Squishmallows Top Trumps...


Fisher-Price adds Hartbeeps to the mix. Fisher-Price has partnered with Hartbeeps for the launch of the new DJ Mix & Learn Music Table to highlight its developmental benefits. Fisher-Price is partnering with Hartbeeps pre-school music classes in creating a bespoke musical lesson showcasing the new Fisher-Price DJ Mix & Learn music table. 


'Disney Lorcana' launches at mass. TCG display shelves plundered. Ravensburger announced that Disney Lorcana: The First Chapter has officially launched September 1, 2023 at mass retail locations. The game is now available at Target, Walmart, Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Barnes & Noble, FYE, Hot Topic, in the U.S. It is also at Toys R Us, Walmart, Mastermind, Indigo and GameStop in Canada.

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People of Play

Atari founder Nolan Bushnell has launched ExoDexa, a learning games platform incorporating K-12 curriculum. Bushnell serves as chairman of ExoDexa, joined by Leah Hanes as CEO and president. Hanes is also CEO of the Two Bit Circus Foundation, a STEAM education-based nonprofit organization. The educational game company uses an adaptive learning platform to educate students through gameplay...


***The above posted after September 8th***


Former Paramount Global and Disney exec Mark Kingston has launched an IP management company called Libertas Brands, and its first client is one of Spin Master’s plush properties.  Kingston, who has been working as ZAG’s SVP of global consumer products for the last seven months, officially started as the CEO of his new London-based company yesterday. 

Moose Toys names new global president. Based in Melbourne, Ronnie Frankowski will focus on driving innovation, efficiencies and ROI at Moose Toys. Moose Toys has announced that 20-year industry veteran, Ronnie Frankowski has been promoted to the role of global president. Formerly chief commercial officer at the company, Ronnie will be responsible for leading the global senior leadership team to...

Funko’s Brian Mariotti resigns from the company; steps into advisory role. The man who launched Pop! Vinyl continues to distance himself from the company that makes the iconic collectibles. Friday afternoons — particularly those heading into a holiday weekend — tend to be a treasure trove of announcements from publicly traded companies that have to make certain details public as required by law...

Jade Childs looks forward to colorful future with Crayola. Jade has been promoted to marketing controller for the Crayola brand in recognition of her outstanding commercial and creative skills. Having worked on the Crayola brand at Vivid/Goliath for nearly four years, Jade Childs – formerly senior brand manager for Crayola UK – has been promoted to the new position of marketing controller...

Blumhouse Games appoints veteran journalist Louise Blain as creative lead. Blumhouse Games has appointed veteran journalist Louise Blain as its new creative lead. The nascent division was unveiled by Blumhouse, the production company behind horror movies like The Purge, Megan, and Insidious, back in February. 



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Companies and Brands


Toy World caught up with MD Mary Wood to hear how Tomy’s Drumond Park partnership keeps its adult games offering thriving alongside the company’s popular action games. Tomy began distributing for Drumond Park five years ago, a partnership which allowed both brands to branch out into new areas. Even before taking on Drumond Park, Tomy had a strong presence in the kids’ games sector via classic...


Just weeks into its official launch, Xplore Distribution has secured top retail partners and signed exclusive distribution deals with international toy cos. for the various markets that include the UK and Ireland. The co.was set up by experienced industry stalwart Ravi Mashru, and his team Pritesh Davé and Katrina Daley. Ravi, who is CEO, has 15 years of industry experience, while Sales directors Pritesh and Katrina ...


Pop Mart, the entertainment brand from Asia with a growing loyal fan base, will host a grand opening at its first permanent location in the U.S. at the American Dream Mall in New Jersey this month. The opening follows the successful operation of more than 400 stores, 2000 robo stores, and a vast network of distributors across 84 countries and regions. Known for designer toy characters such as Molly, Hirono...


LA’s has signed a deal with Mattel to sell ad inventory on more than 90 of the toyco’s YouTube and YouTube Kids channels for brands such as Barbie (11 million subscribers) and Hot Wheels (pictured) and Thomas & Friends (three million each). is among a handful of companies to which YouTube has granted rights to sell COPPA-compliant ads on its platforms.

Build-A-Bear is continuing its longstanding commitment to children and childhood literacy with a new initiative. In celebration of National Teddy Bear Day on Sept. 9, Build-A-Bear Workshop and the Build-A-Bear Foundation are having a special one-day promotion providing guests an opportunity to participate in a “Buy a Bear, Give a Bear” program. For every furry friend purchased in Build-A-Bear Workshops...

Clixo Launches First Themed Packs, Mars Rover & Ocean Creatures, Elevating Imaginative Play. Renowned toy design studio Toyish Labs announced the launch of two new packs in its award-winning Clixo toy line: the Mars Rover Clixo Pack and the Ocean Creatures Clixo Pack. They have also proudly announced that both packs have been named finalists for the 2023 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards....

Konami Digital Entertainment B.V. has announced the long-awaited 25th Anniversary Tin: Dueling Heroes is out now for the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game (TCG) in Europe and Oceania. In addition to plenty of celebratory treats, this must-have set includes a Quarter Century Secret Rare version of one of the 16 iconic monsters decorating the sides of the tin. These include monsters from classic cards spanning...

WildBrain CPLG has launched a location-based entertainment (LBE) division to move its portfolio of kids brands further into this global business sector through a mix of new theme parks and entertainment centers. The plan is to focus initially on building out WildBrain’s brands in the APAC region, so former Paramount exec Evi Sari has been recruited to join the agency’s senior leadership team...


Nintendo’s new employee retention rate is 98.8%. Generally, the average employee retention rate for new employees in the Land of the Rising Sun is around 70%, so 98.8% is astounding. It’s hard not to see the benefits of working for Nintendo, which is by far the biggest console manufacturer in Japan at the moment with the Nintendo Switch family of systems. 

Barbie introduces Women in Sport lineup. With 250+ careers and counting, Barbie continues to inspire the potential in every child as the brand introduces the Women in Sports lineup as the 2023 Career of the Year. Knowing that women remain underrepresented in the sports industry, from positions on the field to team coaches and leaders beyond the locker room, the Barbie brand has launched...


Toys"R"Us and Babies"R"Us Canada celebrate 10 new store openings. Just in time for the holiday rush, Toys"R"Us Canada expands their world of play across Canada with 10 store openings, including two first-of-its-kind new stand alone Babies"R"Us locations. Customers will also be able to find Toys"R"Us shop in shop in all new rooms + spaces stores, which opened earlier this summer across the country. 


Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live Glow Party is roaring back to a city near you. Do the kids in your life need more excitement in their life? The Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live Glow Party is returning to more than 35 cities in North America, Europe, and Australia next year. The show from Mattel and Family Entertainment transforms the Hot Wheels monster trucks kids play with into a real-life experience they won’t forget. 


MGA’s Miniverse takes No.1 spot in UK. After reaching the No.2 position in July, MGA’s Miniverse has now become the top New Property as the brand continues to lead the UK collectibles market. MGA’s Miniverse is celebrating becoming No.1 in Circana’s roundup of the Top 10 New Properties in the UK market in August. From debuting at No.9 when it launched in the UK back in April, MGA’s Miniverse...


‘Zoonicorn’ gears up for Toy Fair. The brand will also be showcased at the L.A. September Toy Preview. Zoonicorn is showing up in a big way for Toy Fair in New York. Zoonicorn’s master toy licensee United Smile and leading licensee SRM Entertainment are showing off the first look at the toy line inspired by the preschool animated series this fall. In 


'Warhammer Heroes' blind boxes incoming: 'Series 4: Space Marine Heroes'. Games Workshop will release Warhammer Heroes Series 4: Space Marine Heroes, a new blind box, into retail. These single miniature blind boxes have seven different Space Marines to collect.  The set will feature different Intercessors, an Assault Intercessor, a Heavy Intercessor, an Eliminator, and  a Captain.  


Repos Production reveals 'Waterfall Park' for U.S. retail. Repos Production revealed Waterfall Park, a new edition of Chinatown, for release into retail on October 6, 2023. Waterfall Park is a new edition of Z-Man Games' Chinatown, which is a negotiation game. The goal of Waterfall Park is to trade and exchange attractions in order to build up the biggest and best amusement park in the world. 


Games Workshop announces new 'Warhammer Age of Sigmar' boxed set. Games Workshop announced Vanguard: Orruk Warclans, a new boxed set for Warhammer Age of Sigmar, which will head to retail soon.The new set was announced at the NOVA Open over the weekend in Washington D.C. This set gives the greenskins a bit of a boost, adding 16 new miniatures to their pool.

Plan B reveals 'Century Big Box' for U.S. retail. Comes with All Three Games; Adds New Expansion. Plan B Games revealed Century Big Box, a board game collection, for release into retail on October 27, 2023. This new Big Box edition of the classic board game series Century offers players three games in one box. It includes Century: Spice Road, Century: Eastern Wonders, and Century: A New World. 


Take over the Holidays with 'The Nightmare Before Christmas'. Mixlore will release The Nightmare Before Christmas, a new tactical card game, into retail on October 13, 2023. In this game, players can take on the roles of Jack, Sally, Santa Claus, Oogie Boogie, Dr Finkelstein or The Mayor as they collect Holiday tokens over four rounds of play. Each character has their own deck that features a unique play-style. 


Pokémon TCG Halloween event features Trick or Trade BOOster bundles with exclusive cards. A new event for the Pokémon Trading Card Game includes Halloween-themed cards. The Pokémon TCG is based on the popular video game series and sees two players competing against each other using their Pokémon card decks. Players can either acquire pre-built Pokémon card decks or can build their own decks using 60 cards.

The LEGO Group pledges to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The LEGO Group has pledged to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050 as part of its continued efforts to reduce environmental impact. The company has submitted its intention to the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) and will work with the SBTi to develop a target which will cover Scope 1, 2 & 3 emissions*.

Lucasfilm Consumer Products announces ‘Ahsoka’ products. Lucasfilm Consumer Products has announced a collection of products inspired by the “Star Wars” original series, “Ahsoka,” which is streaming now on Disney+. The range includes: Black Series Sabine Wren Premium Electronic Helmet, from Hasbro; Gaming chair sleeves inspired by the former Jedi knight, designed for the Secretlab TITAN Evo; “Ahsoka”...


Wingspan publisher’s next board game is about bees in space. The studio behind Wingspan, Stonemaier Games, has revealed their next tabletop title – Apiary. Set in a distant future wherein humanity no longer inhabits the Earth, Apiary sees enormous honeybees now populate the planet. The cause of the human’s disappearance is unknown, but their absence has enabled the humble insects to claim Earth as their own. 


Bandai Namco reveals second wave of ‘TEKKEN’ GameDimensions figures. The new wave includes Jin Kazama and King. Bandai Namco Toys & Collectibles America’s new line of figures, GameDimensions, released this past June, with TEKKEN characters Heihachi and Kazuya Mishima introducing the collection. Now, the second wave of figures has been revealed, adding two more favorites from the classic fighting game.

Goliath Games ‘Pops Off’ to Thorpe Park to launch new game. TikTok and Gogglebox star Joe Baggs headed to Thorpe Park on Wednesday 30th August to create content for new party game from Goliath, Pop Off! At Thorpe Park, Joe Baggs was drawing in visitors to take part in various Pop Off! challenges, with the chance to win the highly addictive game. 


Zuru celebrates success of new 2023 lines. Zuru reports that its new 2023 launches are ‘smashing targets’, with sales of Snackles, X-Shot and Mega Gross Minis all exceeding expectations. Zuru has announced that sales of its new AW 2023 brand launches, which includes Snackles, as well as X-Shot Insanity and Mega Gross Minis, are all “smashing targets”. UK & Ireland general manager, Will Collinson...


Eolo Toys’ Hong Kong showroom is back. The reopening of the Eolo Toys showroom in Hong Kong reaffirms the company’s commitment to fostering connections with other toy companies. Eolo Toys has announced the reopening of its permanent showroom in Hong Kong. This event marks a significant milestone for the company as it unveils a larger and more immersive space to showcase its...


Barbie brand expands with Barbie Pop Reveal. As kids unbox Barbie Pop Reveal, they discover a scented Barbie doll with color changing hair and makeup, plus a host of other surprises. Mattel is launching what it describes as “the fruitiest unboxing experience ever” with the new Barbie Pop Reveal range, which is an exciting new evolution of the popular Reveal segment. 


Ensky Paper brings ‘Pokémon’ puzzles to North America. Japanese manufacturer, Ensky, has announced the addition of “Pokémon” to its growing list of intellectual properties. Paper theater and puzzle sets of fan-favorite “Pokémon,” such as Pikachu, Mewtwo and Eevee, will initiate the first rollout of products, combining “Pokémon” with the skills of Ensky. 


Razor launches new Ground Force Go Kart. This is the smallest go kart in the series. Razor’s latest ride is the company’s electric go kart. The Ground Force Rad Rod is designed for riders ages 6 and up and is modeled after custom built rides. It joins the Ground Force and Ground Force Elite as the smallest in the series. “The Rad Rod’s unique style pays homage to the classic garage-built ‘rat rods’ ...


Japanime Games reveals 'Queerz! Ttrpg Basic Box' for retail. Japanime Games revealed Queerz! TTRPG Basic Box, a new RPG boxed set designed by Son of Oak Studio, for release into retail in November 2023. Queerz! TTRPG Basic Box is a TTRPG adaptation of the LGBTQ+ manga by Isago Fukuda.  Players will take on the role of characters with powers that come from Rainbow Empathy, a magical force...

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Gaming: Digital, Video, Hardware, and Development


Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster games top 3 million copies in two years. Square Enix revealed its pixel remasters of the early mainline Final Fantasy games have sold 3 million copies in total. The milestone covers their releases on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch, along with Steam and mobile. "Thank you so much for your support," wrote Square Enix, "and for sharing this EXP with us." 

September is a huge month for Game Pass. Early September looks pretty nice for Xbox’s subscription service Game Pass. In a September 5 blog post, the company announced subscribers could expect to play action role-playing game Starfield, moody Soulslike Lies of P, and more in the first few weeks before fall. If you haven’t heard, Starfield is a NASA-punk, spacefarer role-playing game, and it might also be “the weirdest...


Spyro Reignited Trilogy sales fly to 10 million units. According to developer Toys for Bob, the Spyro Reignited Trilogy has sold 10 million copies worldwide. The remaster bundle for Insomniac Games' platformer series released in 2018 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, followed by PC and Nintendo Switch the following year. Previously, Activision Blizzard was cagey on Reignited's sales performance...

Starfield rockets past 1 million concurrent players within 24 hours of launch. Starfield has exceeded 1 million concurrent players across all platforms within 24 hours of launch. That's according to Xbox boss Phil Spencer, who thanked players for helping the sci-fi adventure achieve the "great milestone" in a post on X. Bethesda's long-awaited space RPG launched on September 6, 2023, but has been available...


Valve bans 90K Dota 2 accounts for "smurfing". At the start of September, Valve permanently banned 90,000 "smurf" accounts from Dota 2. In a recent blog on the game's website, the developer warned that creating such accounts "is not welcome in Dota." Smurfing is when players create alternate accounts for various purposes ranging from not playing with others at their current skill level to cheating or "to otherwise be toxic...

Highlighted Press Releases

The Learning Journey Announces 17 New Product Awards. The Learning Journey International, LLC (TLJI) is continuously innovating and improving product lines to offer the best educational value to families all over the world. New-to-the-brand products and revamped products remain recognized for the educational opportunities they provide. This summer, TLJI is proud to announce 17 new product awards! Awards have been received from the following: PAL Awards (4), Mom's Choice Awards (2), Academics' Choice (1), The National Parenting Center (1), Creative Child Awards (6), Baby Maternity Awards (3)


***The above posted after Septemmber 8th***


UNLOCK A SHARED LOVE OF THE GAME WITH FUTURE FANS FOOTBALL LAUNCHING SEPTEMBER 2023. Teach The Concepts Of Football To Young Kids With The Future Fans Storybook-Led Experience. Columbus, OH (September 5, 2023) A Cincinnati Bengals super fan watched alone the night of the 2022 AFC Championship as his team earned their first trip to the Super Bowl in 33 years. In that moment, Mike Schroder, co-founder of Future Fans, wished he could share what he knew would become a lifelong memory with his then 5-year-old daughter. “She knew the players and the fight song, but I couldn’t get her to watch the game with me,” said Schroder.

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Safety and Counterfeiting


Vaping devices disguised as toys, school suppliesA warning to parents and teachers as kids head back to school, watch out for e-cigarettes that look like things kids might like. The FDA is concerned about these illegal products that look like cartoon, movie, and video game characters, including Spongebob Squarepants and Super Mario; toys and electronic devices, like cameras and handheld games; and even school supplies, like markers, highlighters, and thumb drives. The FDA sent letters to 15 online retailers, warning them to stop selling these products.

Philippines. Toxic watchdog group pushes for “SAFE TOYS FOR KIDS” campaign. As the “ber” months kick off, shops and stores are inundating their shelves with a wide array of toys. Toxic watchdog group BAN Toxics has taken the initiative to closely monitor these toys which aims to shed light on the presence of toxic chemicals in these playthings and to champion the health and safety of our children. Thony Dizon, Toxics Campaigner at BAN Toxics, stressed the importance of this endeavor, stating, “Every child deserves access to safe and good quality …

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Associations, Shows, Awards, Events, and Festivals


Licensing Awards 2023 Winners Announced. On Sept. 12, the licensing industry gathered in The Great Room at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel to learn the winners of the 2023 Licensing Awards. Compered by comedian, Tom Allen, standing in for Joel Dommett, the audience of 1,200 were welcomed by Max Publishing’s Ian Hyder and Jakki Brown. The awards culminated with Danny Schweiger and Mark Schweiger...


***The above posted after September 8th***


The organisers report that Kids India has emphatically confirmed its position as the most important international B2B trade fair for the Indian toy sector. Between Aug. 31st and Sept. 2nd, 5313 trade visitors from 35 countries attended the Jio World Convention Centre in Mumbai to discover innovative product ideas, make new business contacts and top up on the latest thinking in the industry. In terms of exhibitors, Kids...


TTPM, the leader in video product reviews for toys, baby, and pet gear announced their Best of Baby 2023 List. The list features the best Baby Gear across 21 categories, designed to educate parents. “Parents look to us for recommendations on top products to help them make better shopping decisions. Our team takes this very seriously, putting countless hours of testing into all of the products...


2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK winner announced. 1979 MG B-EAST has won the UK leg of the Hot Wheels Legends Tour and is now in with a chance of becoming the next legendary die-cast toy. A 1979 MGB GT nicknamed ‘the B-EAST’ is set to represent the UK on the global stage and stake its claim to be recreated as a 1:64 scale die-cast model after winning this year’s Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK..

Schylling Readies for Toy Fair with New Reveals. The company will have activations including a juggling show, costume showcase, and a Big Wheel giveaway. Schylling prepares to bring its portfolio of nostalgic toys to the event. The company plans to showcase popular impulse and tin toys as well as exclusive reveals.

Wild Republic is pleased to announce their Founder, G.B. Pillai, as a finalist in the Champion of Sustainability category at the prestigious Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards. For more than 40 years Mr. Pillai has been the driving force behind the company’s commitment to nature and conservation while proactively striving to be as environmentally friendly and ethically responsible as possible.


2023 Play for Change Awards finalists announced. Ten finalists have been selected to compete for Gold, Silver and Bronze Play for Change Awards and the winners will be announced later this month at a ceremony in Brussels.Toy Industries of Europe (TIE) has unveiled the finalists of the fourth edition of the Play for Change Awards. 


Autumn Fair exhibitors raise concerns over Connect scheme. A team from the show organizer met with disgruntled exhibitors to discuss their grievances over the newly-implemented Connect meeting platform on the last day of the show. Daniel Ward, head of Sales at Autumn Fair exhibitor Craft Buddy, shared this photo of the gathered crowds on LinkedIn earlier this week. 


With One Month to Go, Brand Licensing Europe Confirms 251 Exhibitors, 57 First Timers, a New Licensee Pavilion and Advice Centre, and Visitor and Retail Registrations Tracking Ahead of Last Year. As the sun sets on summer in Europe, Brand Licensing Europe (BLE) reveals exhibitor numbers have surpassed 250 (14% up on last year) including almost 60 first timers, strong visitor and retail registration...


New York Toy Fair’s re-imagination. Toy World spoke to Steve Pasierb, president & CEO of The Toy Association, about the upcoming New York Toy Fair. Taking place from Saturday, 30th September to Tuesday, 3rd October, this year marks a new timeslot for the trade show. 2023 marks the first time the date of New York Toy Fair has been changed after decades of being held in February. Steve tells Toy World about this decision and the reaction he’s received so far.

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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 readers. Archives can be found HERE

Joan Packard Luks, MARCH 14, 1946 – SEPTEMBER 4, 2023, Joan was a former President of Women in Toys and left a legacy of mentorship and work in toys and licensing.

Luks previously worked as the Director of Licensing at GUND, fostering partnerships with industry bigs such as Disney, Nickelodeon, Sesame Workshop, and others. She then moved on to leading her own company, The Serenata Group. Luks also worked closely with her partner David Wollos at The ThinkTank Emporium.

“Joan's vibrancy, positivity, and warmth brightened the lives of everyone fortunate enough to know her. Her contributions to our industry were matched only by her genuine kindness and unwavering dedication to uplifting others.” WiT President, Janice Ross

In addition to her work in the licensing industry, Luks was an important member of the WiT community. Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment is a non-profit organization with the aim of advocating the advancement of women through a variety of opportunities in leadership, networking, and education.

Luks’ work as President of WiT included mentorship, advice, and support, working diligently toward the goal of a more equitable workplace for women in the industry.

WiT has extended its condolences to Luks’ family, friends, and colleagues. A memorial service will be held today at Gutterman and Musicant Jewish Funeral Directors. More details as well as the opportunity to share memories are available on the official page.


Fred Held, passed away August 30. Fred was a past Vice President Operations and Marketing at Mattel. More details to follow. 

Paul Reubens, the actor best known for portraying Pee-wee Herman, died Sunday night after a private bout of cancer. He was 70.

“Please accept my apology for not going public with what I’ve been facing the last six years,” wrote Reubens in a statement posted to Instagram after his death. “I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you.”

“Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness,” wrote Reubens’ estate in the caption. “Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit. A gifted and prolific talent, he will forever live in the comedy pantheon and in our hearts as a treasured friend and man of remarkable character and generosity of spirit.”

Reubens began his career in the 1970s after joining the Los Angeles live comedy troupe the Groundlings as an improvisational comedian and stage actor. In 1980, he launched “The Pee-wee Herman Show,” a stage production centered on a fictional character he had been developing for years. As Pee-wee became a beloved comic figure, Reubens’ show ran for five sold-out months, and he landed a special at HBO. Reubens also committed to the character in his interviews and public appearances.

In 1985, he teamed with Tim Burton on “Pee-wee’s Big Adventure,” the character’s feature film debut, which was a critical and commercial success. Reubens returned three years later for a follow-up film, “Big Top Pee-wee,” helmed by Randal Kleiser.

Klash Singh - HTI has been in touch with Toy World to share the sad news about its employee. Klash Singh, who passed away last week, was a popular member of the HTI team and most recently worked as a Sales manager for the company.

In a statement, the company said: “It is with deep sadness and heavy hearts that we inform you of the death of Klash, who passed away on Thursday 27th July 2023.

Klash spent over 20 years in the toy industry, being employed by HTI originally back in 2003 and moving on to spend nine years at Kandy Toys before returning to HTI in 2023.

Klash was 59 years old when she passed away. She had an infectious personality, enormous enthusiasm and passion. This was loved and admired by all, not just within the companies where she worked, but by all her customers past and present.

Klash will be sorely missed by all those who knew her. She was a very generous, considerate and kind lady. She leaves behind her partner Kevin, three children and three grandchildren, with another grandson on the way.”

HTI’s owner, John Hutt, commented: “Klash will be missed greatly and remembered dearly.”

Worldwide Magazines Weekly Top Stories

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Toy Trade Monthly Issues​​

Adventure Media & Events (US)

aNb Media (US) 

​posts Friday morning

Toyworld (UK)

Journalist on holiday :) Powered by Toyworld

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ICv2: The Business of Geek Culture (US) 

'Disney Lorcana' Launches at Mass
Rolling for Initiative -- 'Disney Lorcana' Hits Mass; RIP Keith Polster
Sirius Dice Unveils 'Magic: The Gathering - Black Lotus Spindown D20'
Ravensburger Announces Reprint of 'Disney Lorcana: The First Chapter'
Wizards of the Coast Announces Three 'Magic: The Gathering' 'LotR' Tins
GameStop Collectible Sales Plummet
Stonemaier Games Announces 'Apiary'
'Warhammer Heroes' Blind Boxes Incoming
Take Over the Holidays with 'The Nightmare Before Christmas'
Alleged 'Magic: The Gathering' Thieves Charged

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

- The Complete List of 2023 TOTY Awards Nominees

- ZAG will be present at LicensingCon Brasil 2023 with Miraculous and Ghostforce

- Mattel pays tribute to María Félix with a special edition of Barbie

The Bugg Report (Australia)

Casual Game Revolution

News Flash: Express Route Released, Letter Jam Online
The Op has released a new cooperative board game, Czech Games Edition has made an online adaptation of one of their games, and Lucky Duck Games has a new game available for pre-order.

Video of the Week 

Toy Hub Trivia: Mark Setteducati



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