September 29 - October 6, 2023
Welcome to Your Weekly News Brief!
Happy Post-Fair Friday!
Another NY Toy Fair is history, but it was strange on many levels: pricing, who was there, who wasn't there, the weather, and more. Even stranger was the announcement that there would be no Toy Fair in 2024, it would be in March of 2025 and January of 2026, conflicting with other shows, just as this one did. There are more details in Kim Vandenbroucke's feature article and in the Event section in this issue. Funniest line I heard from a CEO who shall remain nameless. "Did they consult a Ouija Board, or was it a Magic Eight Ball?"
That aside, it was so GREAT to see so many people I hadn't seen in so long. Our Connolly's Pub event went until after 2am. We were kicked out at that point, or it would have gone longer.
Of course, a highlight for me was my Hall of Fame Induction. Absolutely incredible - such an honor - the people, the emotions, the event, and even the relief I didn't trip on stage! I am forever grateful to such a wonderful industry for welcoming me in my early days and supporting our many endeavors through the years. Honored and humbled beyond words. Thank you.
POP Week is November 1st- 5th!
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.
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"TBR is required reading for: inventors, manufacturers, retailers, marketers, suppliers, absolutely everyone!" - Robert Fuhrer, Founder, NEXTOY
Person of the Week - Christopher Byrne
Entertainment 2023. Welcome to a New Reality
Anyone who’s been kicking around the kids’ space for a while understands the dynamic nature of children’s entertainment. The boom of technology, the always-on screen, the ever-present opportunity to interact with a favorite show or character 24/7 (well, allowing some time for eating, sleeping, and school) are defining features of kids’ entertainment in 2023. They’re a far cry from kids having to wait till Saturday morning to see their favorite shows, a concept that completely baffled my nieces who had grown up being their own programmers, choosing what they wanted to watch when.
This ubiquity and nearly universal access have created their own set of challenges. For years, marketers knew where the eyes were on Saturday morning and could easily target commercials to kids. Today, while we know kids are spending a lot of time on YouTube in addition to streaming and recording, the fragmentation of the marketplace makes launching shows a challenge. Add in TikTok and other social media, and cultural concern about screen time among kids, and you have a market that’s more crowded and fragmented than ever before.sful, it almost always has to have a strong merchandise program. This is not merely to delight fans; it’s also to generate the revenue that’s required to cover production costs and make profits, even when production is up north. (Thanks, Canada, for the tax credits!)
I spent some time at Toy Fair walking the floor with two show runners who have an impressive list of credits. We talked about the essential component of merchandise and multiple platforms to create a successful property. If we look at the shows being cancelled, in many cases it’s because they don’t have a strong merchandise or franchise strategy of presence. In fact, if you think about it, the juggernaut success of Paw Patrol, Turtles, Peppa Pig, Miraculous, Blue and a handful of others, are more anomalies when you consider the number of shows being produced for kids—and even more the number being pitched. My friends were saying something many of us in the business have known for a while: licensing has gone from being an afterthought/add-on to an essential component of the pitch. They were shopping the show for potential partners or product concepts that might work for concepts they have in development. READ MORE...
Person of the Week - Kim Vandenbroucke
The Hottest Topic at NY Toy Fair
2023 New York Toy Fair is in the books and what was THE talk of the show? It wasn’t a hot new trend or a cool game with trampolining pigs — although you should check that pigs game out. Nope, it was the future of NY Toy Fair and this topic was HEATED.
Normally I cover Toy Fair Trends, but the change in venue was by far the number one topic of the fair. Although some said they were pleased with their sales, it didn’t appear that this fall show was really working. Several of the big name companies weren’t there as they had events in LA the weeks prior. There was no big Spin Master party. Fair attendance felt lighter, and the aisles weren’t super packed with attendees. Even the seats in front of Starbucks were far easier to come by than in the past.
Then on Sunday, the Toy Association announced that the fair is moving. In 2025 we’re going to have one last hurrah in New York and starting in 2026 the show will be in New Orleans for at least three years. Many I spoke with were disappointed and expressed sadness about leaving NYC. Most who travel to New York have longstanding traditions with clients, customers, co-workers, and friends. How many years has Mary been hosting her People of Play/ChiTAG party at Connolly’s?? The loss of the toy building is still in our lore, and now the city that is so rich with toy history is going to be left behind. READ MORE...
Person of the Week - Rose O’Neill
Inventor of Kewpie® Dolls, 2023 Toy Industry Hall of Fame Inductee
Hello People of Play!
We were thrilled to hear that our client, Rose O’Neill, Inventor of Kewpie® Dolls, was to be inducted into the 2023 Toy Industry Hall of Fame along with other industry legends, including your very own trailblazer, Mary Couzin.
Since Rose O’Neill (1874-1944) is no longer physically with us, nor is James (Jim) Skahill, the amazing steward for all things Kewpie for thirty years, Leslie Levine, Owner of Licensing Works!®, the merchandise agency for the Kewpie® IP, reached out to interview two people closest to gain their perspective.
Susan Scott is the former president of Bonniebrook, Rose O’Neill’s home that has been turned into a museum celebrating her life and work. The Museum is in Walnut Shade, Missouri, a suburb of Branson. Scott has been a volunteer at Bonniebrook for more than 20 years. She's been instrumental in getting O'Neill into the spotlight, working tirelessly to have Rose inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2019 and played a role in lobbying for Rose’s recognition for both the Eisner award at last year’s San Diego Comic-Con and this most recent Toy Hall of Fame honor. All wonderful tributes, long overdue! READ MORE...
Cartoon Lovers, Lexophiles & People in Need of a Smile!
Cartoon of the Week: Thank you, Bob Fuhrer for the funny cartoon this week!
Lexophile Lovers: "I used to work in a shoe-recycling shop. It was sole-destroying." Thank you, Jerry Cleary for sharing with our readers!
"Toys have the power to bring people together, bridging the gap between generations." - Reuben Klamer, inventor of The Game of Life
“Anything worth dying for is certainly worth living for.” - Joseph Heller, Catch-22
Have a cartoon, quote or a joke to share with your colleagues? Send it to me! Mary
Financial and Legal
Toronto-based Spin Master Corp. inked a definitive agreement to acquire U.S.-based Melissa & Doug in a $950 million cash transaction. The companies have been licensing partners for a number of years via the PAW Patrol brand, and the deal will strengthen Spin Master’s business by adding Melissa & Doug’s famed line of wooden toys to its product mix.
***The above posted after October 6th***
It was bound to happen eventually: a company has filed a lawsuit in federal court against Elon Musk’s X Corp. over its renaming of Twitter. The company in question is X Social Media LLC, an ad agency from Florida that alleges X Corp. is guilty of violating Florida common law because of “unfair competition and trademark and service mark infringement,” as well as the state’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act.
Crisis-struck German maker of Playmobil toys cuts jobs. The Horst Brandstaetter Group, named after its founder, plans to slash nearly 700 positions worldwide by 2025, 369 of them in Germany, amid long-running business woes. "The company management took this decision after a comprehensive analysis of all divisions and in light of the development of the business and current economic challenges," ...
Ousted Ubisoft execs arrested on sexual misconduct charges. Over three years after allegations of their inappropriate behavior came to light, five former Ubisoft executives were arrested and detained for questioning. Per French newspaper Libération, these arrests came following a year of investigations from French authorities. Those arrested include ex-CCO Serge Hascoët and ex-editorial VP Tommy François...
Naughty Dog lays off "dozens" of contract developers. Layoffs have reportedly hit the staff over at Naughty Dog. A new report from Kotaku alleges the Last of Us developer has cut at least 25 contractor jobs. A pair of sources told the outlet the affected contractors are expected to work through the month of October. While the art and production departments were affected, the majority of reductions reportedly hit the QA team.
FBI indicts Wall Street banker for doing crimes on Xbox 360. A newly unsealed FBI indictment accuses a former analyst at Goldman Sachs of insider trading, including allegedly using an Xbox to pass tips onto his close friends. The friend group earned over $400,000 in ill-gotten gains as a result, federal prosecutors claim. “There’s no tracing [Xbox 360 chat],” the analyst allegedly told his friend who was worried...
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HABA FAMILYGROUP has set its sights on reducing its 1,677 workforce to around 1,000 employees as part of its restucturing under self-administration, a process similar to Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings in the U.S. The reduction in force is part of Future Pact 2030, a new strategic plan presented to the works council and employees on October 4, 2023. The focus of the new and improved HABA will be on...
Trends, Lists, Market Research, and State of the Industry
***The above posted after Oct 6th***
Target's 2023 top toy list with Disney and FAO Schwarz exclusives; many toys under $25. Target is teaming up with Disney and FAO Schwarz for a holiday toy lineup with a wish list of exclusive products, most of which are under $25 and several under $8.
Record Halloween spending expected this year. According to Statista, the widely celebrated tradition will see around 70% of Americans planning to participate this year.
Toy Association unveils new Holiday shopping insights & trends at Toy Fair 2023. Kids won’t be the only ones unwrapping toys this holiday season! 89% of parents say they will also buy toys for the grown-ups in their lives...
Stories, Comments, and Advice
John Baulch, Toy World - Bombshell…it’s the Friday Blog! (at NYTF) We were invited to attend a press conference on Sunday morning. There had been rumors on Saturday of an announcement about future plans for the show. I heard a few whispers, but none that ultimately proved accurate. One by one, twists and turns were revealed. No show in 2024. Then back to New York in March 2025. We were just trying to process...
American toy store owner Rick Derr updates Toy World UK readers on the latest from indie toy retail in the USA and tells us how new sections in his store are performing. Despite sales having been a bit quiet over summer in the UK, Rick informs us that things have been quite the opposite where he is. He said: “We have had a marvelous run, in fact, the best run in my 27 years of running a local toy shop. The streak...
James Zahn, Toy Book Editor: Empire State of Mind. The toy industry returns to the concrete jungle where dreams are made and new generations find inspiration in play. For years, many of the biggest voices in the business have questioned just how many major trade shows are needed around the world. Hong Kong, London, and Nuremberg loom large with major events that previously led into Toy Fair as the grand finale...
‘Barbie’! Russian Theaters Find Ways to Screen Blockbusters Amid Sanctions. American studios stopped releasing Hollywood movies in Russia after the invasion of Ukraine, but many theaters have found a workaround. As people in much of the world flocked to see Greta Gerwig’s blockbuster film “Barbie” this summer, viewers in Russia were left out. At least officially. Along with other studios, Warner Bros...
Standing out on the digital playground. Kids media specialist Peter Robinson tracks the path kids take from following to engaging with brands on popular platforms like YouTube and TikTok. In the digital era, children and young consumers explore a vast array of online destinations, creating unique digital playgrounds where they explore, interact and engage with content. Beyond popular platforms like Roblox, Snapchat...
The Toy Book Top 10: The Hottest Stories of September 2023. It’s officially October, and with Toy Fair in New York now behind us, The Toy Book is hitting the rewind button and taking a look back at some of the hottest stories of September 2023, as chosen by you, the readers. The launch of our newly expanded website in July brought with it new features and functionality, including NEW Stock This! New Product Showcase Pages.
Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz on Barney film: “It will not be an odd movie”. Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz is weighing in on the forthcoming Barney film that has Daniel Kaluuya attached. “It’s too early to be specific, but I can tell you we are taking a fresh approach that will be fun, entertaining and culturally oriented. It will not be an odd movie,” Kreiz told Semafor in an interview. M
Raising the bar: 3 common mistakes toy creators make. How to make sure your invention is a success. A lot of people think the toy industry is like the movie Big starring Tom Hanks, and while there are many fun-filled days playing, brainstorming, and trying to come up with the next big thing, most days are focused on more mundane (but still important) things, which includes legal.
Leveraging: consistency in package design: Consistency is key. Although this may be tough to hear, more often than not, the biggest reason why many toy brands’ package design systems no longer resonate with their target audiences is the fact that too many exceptions to the standardization guidelines have been made by the brand’s marketers and brand managers.
Influencer marketing in the digital age. There’s no denying the power and reach of a well-placed influencer post. When I say “influencer marketing,” 95% of people will understand what I mean, and 75% of you probably wish you were an influencer. But, this wasn’t always the case. Picture this: It’s the 1990s, and your go-to PR move was faxing over a hard copy of your piece in The New York Times.
Scalpers ruin online sales of Pokémon Van Gogh merch, too. I woke up today hoping to buy a cute plush of Pikachu wearing an outfit inspired by world-renowned artist Vincent Van Gogh, but scalpers got to it the second it went up on the Pokémon Center website. I’m frustrated, and that’s the general sentiment a lot of Pokémon fans are feeling right now, as scalpers and resellers have poached the limited-time...
History and Nostalgia
Funny Bones from Parker Brothers (1968). Released in 1968 by Parker Brothers, Funny Bones was an interactive card game that challenged adult couples to score points by holding oversized cards between two body parts without dropping them. The game was an attempt by Parker Brothers to parlay the success of Twister into another party game where physicality was an essential element.
GyroMaze from Kenner (1978). Released in 1978, Kenner’s GyroMaze gave new meaning to the term “rock and roll.” The “wiggly, wobbly game of skill & balance” challenged children ages five and up to stand on a hard-plastic platform and use only their body movement to guide a marble through a maze. The labyrinth-inspired game board measured approximately 18-inches across and weighed close to 5 lbs.
Tales of Toy Fairs Past: From Elephants and Blizzards to the Grinch and Beyond. Toy Fair has a long legacy of legendary parties, activations, and epic stunts. Once upon a time in the great, big city, a magical transformation happened. For more than two weeks every winter, it seemed like everywhere you went, the city was all about toys and play. People came from all over the world.
Licensing and Entertainment
Black Barbie: A Documentary, which details Mattel’s introduction of a Black doll to its Barbie collection and the women that brought it to life, has landed at Netflix and Shonda Rhimes‘ Shondaland. Lagueria Davis directs the doc and produces alongside Aaliyah Williams. The logline for the project reads: “Black Barbie celebrates the momentous impact three Black women at Mattel had on the evolution of the Barbie...
Hasbro has many brand anniversaries on the horizon, including significant milestones for “Peppa Pig,” Transformers and Dungeons & Dragons. To find out more, Casey Collins, senior vice president, general manager, global consumer products, Hasbro, joins Barbara Smith, digital editor, License Global, to chat about what is in store to mark the milestones and how location-based experiences are working...
***The above was posted after October 6th***
Earlier this year, Asmodee‘s Fantasy Flight Games revealed it would be launching Star Wars: Unlimited, a trading card game that encompasses all eras of Star Wars. Now, the co. is sharing details of what we can expect to see in the game, including products and cards. The Sparks of Rebellion Prerelease Box ($29.99) will be released a week before the rest of the game and select stores will be participating in a...
Hasbro is sending us all a message: You won’t want to miss the Holocomm collection of Star Wars: The Black Series figures. These five action figures up the sci-fi vibe of your collection. Each figure is made with a translucent plastic and comes with a holopuck that lights the figure from below for 30 minutes at a time. Each collectible also includes a bounty chip with an Aurebesh inscription.
Mattel is honoring singer Stevie Nicks with her own Barbie doll. Mattel designed the doll to channel Nicks as she appears on the cover of Fleetwood Mac's 1977 album "Rumours." The cover shows Nicks dressed in one of her "Rhiannon" outfits, named for the song off the band's 1975 self-titled album that Nicks said was about a Welsh witch.
Gel Blaster partners with Microsoft for ‘Halo’ Blasters: The collection will launch next year. Gel Blaster, the maker of water ball blasters, is teaming up with Microsoft to make Halo–themed blasters. “We’re excited for our community around the world to have the opportunity to bring the Halo universe to life with Gel Blaster’s awesome line of products,” says John Friend, Head of Halo and Xbox Consumer Products.
Jazwares picks up global master toy rights for Mermicorno: Starfall. Jazwares has the rights to license the upcoming show into categories such as plush, figurines and Halloween costumes. A limited range will launch in spring 2025, followed by a larger rollout in fall 2025. Thunderbird Brands is co-managing the licensing program with tokidoki and Jazwares.
Mattel makes wishes come true with Disney’s WISH product collection. In advance of the upcoming November release of Disney’s highly anticipated animated musical, WISH, Mattel is unveiling a unique new product collection inspired by the movie. With Mattel’s new WISH doll line, fans excited for the film can now let their imaginations wander and bring their wishes to life.
CandyRific is introducing Mini Candy Dispensers in licensed designs with characters from Nickelodeon and Spin Master Entertainment’s hit animated series PAW Patrol. These Mini Candy Dispensers bring excitement and fun at a lower price point to introduce new consumers to the novelty category.
Steiff Celebrates Global James Bond Day with new Villainous Bond Bear. Steiff, the inventors of the teddy bear, first brought James Bond to life in teddy bear form earlier this year with their Limited Edition James Bond “Dr. No” Musical Bear. The Dr. No Numbered Edition is a beautifully made musical bear with an internal wind-up musical box (a unique Steiff attribute), that plays the iconic 007 theme tune.
The platform—which beta-launched in August, featuring a mix of videos, games, books, music and podcasts—brings together content from several companies Sandbox has acquired for the first time, including preschool streamers Hopster, Curious World and PlayKids.
Nelvana has inked a first presale deal with Canal+ for its preschool series Millie Magnificent, which was commissioned in Canada by Treehouse this past Jan. Both broadcasters have slated the CG-animated show to premiere in late 2024. Centering around the attempts of an inventive girl and her canine companion to build something truly amazing, the TV concept is based on Ashley Spires’ picture book The Most...
Toronto-based Sinking Ship Entertainment and BBC Studios Kids & Family have partnered to expand the Odd Squad franchise’s presence across the pond. Odd Squad UK (12 x 30 minutes) is an official treaty co-production between Sinking Ship and the BBC’s youth-focused production arm. It’s currently shooting in the UK with a predominantly British cast, and will premiere in 2024.
Zodiak Kids & Family Distribution has signed on to manage global sales for all four seasons of Finnish prodco Gutsy Animations’ CG series Moominvalley. Three seasons (39 x 22 minutes) have already premiered, and a fourth is set to debut next year. Gutsy produces the series with broadcasters YLE (Finland) and Sky (UK), and Viaplay joined the co-production this January for the fourth season.
Orlando Bloom to Guest-Star in ‘Peppa Pig’ Wedding Special. The actor will join fiancée and music superstar Katy Perry as part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the children's franchise. Bloom will guest star as the new character and jeweler Mr. Raccoon, who assists with the preparations Mr. Bull and Mrs. Cow’s nuptials in the show’s first-ever wedding. Olivier Dumont, president of eOne’s Family Brands...
PMI Kids’ World is now the global master toy partner for Stumble Guys, a multiplayer party battle royale video game known for its fast-paced, frenetic, and highly social experience. The new toy line is set to debut in 2024 and will feature fan-favorite characters known as Stumblers.
Named one of the top 10 most downloaded apps in the world in 2022, Stumble Guys has built a large following with more than 45 billion...
MGA Entertainment has announced a highly-anticipated partnership with renowned confectionery brand, Haribo, further extending its popular and mouthwatering line of L.O.L. Surprise! Loves Mini Sweets. Since its debut in 2022, the L.O.L. Surprise! Loves Mini Sweets line has steadily grown, captivating collectors’ hearts worldwide with its irresistible candy brand partnerships. Its popularity continues to soar...
The Noble Collection, a leading manufacturer, distributor, and retailer of premium collectibles and Toyllectibles, announced the launch of its first game-inspired product assortment for Minecraft. The premium collector replicas will be exclusively available to fans on-site at New York Comic Con ( from October 12-13, and the Diamond Sword Collector Replica will be available for pre-order exclusively to Con attendees.
BBC Studios has announced that it has expanded its existing partnership with Golden Bear to include the much-loved children’s show Supertato. Golden Bear will create a range of Supertato character plush toys, which are set to hit retail in AW24. Samples of these plush toys will be available to see at the BBC Studios stand at BLE this week, where visitors are invited to check out Stand C180.
Stumble Guys and PMI Kids’ World are joining forces to bring the beloved online multiplayer video game to life with an all-new toy line. Set to debut in 2024, the collection will offer an entirely new way for the game’s thriving and dedicated global community to engage with the Stumble Guys universe and interact with the game’s wildly imaginative roster of characters.
CG-animated Miffy series hops to Canal+. The latest iteration in the long-running preschool franchise will launch in 2025. The French broadcaster, and its production division StudioCanal, are developing the CG toon Miffy (pictured), based on the same-name IP about a young rabbit. Dutch rights holder Mercis and Parisian studio Superprod Animation are also producing the 78 x seven-minute series.
Hasbro unveils new Transformers licensed collaborations ahead of BLE 2023. With a raft of new Transformers CP deals announced, Marianne James, VP EMEA and Asia, Licensed Consumer Products at Hasbro, tells Licensing.biz what else there is to look forward to as the Autobots roll out their 40th anniversary celebrations.
Universal Products & Experiences announces new ‘Jurassic Park’ partnerships in Europe. Throughout this year, Universal Products & Experiences has been celebrating 30 years since Steven Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park” came to the big screen in 1993. Across Europe, UP&E has rolled out a calendar of retail activations, marketing initiatives, live events, digital content and unmissable licensee programs for fans...
Toikido partners with Panini Group for Piñata Smashlings trading cards, stickers. Toikido and Panini Group have partnered to roll out Piñata Smashlings collectibles, stickers, and trading cards. Piñata Smashlings is the first in-house intellectual property (IP) from entertainment studio Toikido, and commands a significant following on gaming platform Roblox.
Build-A-Bear documentary is now available for streaming: The film documents how the brand became an icon in pop culture. The first-ever documentary about Build-A-Bear is coming to home audiences. After the exclusive premiere at Toy Fair in New York City, Unstuffed: A Build-A-Bear Story is officially available to stream starting today.
MGA Entertainment and Crayola Sign multi-year licensing agreement for production and distribution of toys and licensed products under the L.O.L. Surprise! brand. MGA Entertainment (MGA), one of the largest and fastest growing privately held toy and entertainment companies in the world, and Crayola, the company that has inspired artistic creativity in children for more than 100 years...
Millions of people are watching dolls play online. What is going on? We've all done it. Picked up a couple of dolls and acted out a scene. Maybe you played with Star Wars Legos, or your Barbies, or your stuffed animals. Your toys fought with lightsabers, went to work, had a tea party. This behavior typically peters out after childhood. But millions of people are visiting #dolltiktok and specific TikTok...
Gamefam and Mattel to bring Barbie to Roblox:This marks Barbie’s metaverse debut. Metaverse developer Gamefam and Mattel have partnered to bring Barbie to the metaverse. The omnipresent blockbuster blonde is joining ultra-popular online gaming platform Roblox for the very first time. The game, Barbie DreamHouse Tycoon, will release Oct. 6. BarbieDreamHouse Tycoon players will be able to build...
The Op | USAopoly puts a ‘PAW Patrol’ twist on Monopoly and Guess Who? The Op | USAopoly has launched two games inspired by PAW Patrol just as PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie hits theaters this weekend. In Guess Who?: PAW Patrol, kids ages 6 and up put their PAW Patrol knowledge to the test. Just like the classic game, kids each get their own secret character.
LEGO unveils sets for Disney’s upcoming movie ‘Wish’. These sets are inspired by Disney’s upcoming animated movie. LEGO’s latest lineup of Disney sets are inspired by the upcoming movie the company is releasing this November for its 100th anniversary, Wish. Wish follows Asha as she takes on evil with her sidekick, Star, to protect the kingdom of Rosas.
Fun In Motion Toys introduces Nockles fidget toys. Fun In Motion Toys, the company behind Shashibo puzzle cubes, is launching a new fidget toy, Nockles. Nockles are fidgets that snap, pull apart, and form different geometric shapes as they are played with. “I developed Nockles while experimenting with 3D printing soft plastics with compliant structures, like living hinges and fasteners,” says Nockles inventor David Silverglate.
The Dr. Lisa Company, Composition Media to launch ‘The Fresh Beats Dolls’ animated series. The Dr. Lisa Company‘s toys and publishing division, EPI, has teamed up with animation studio Composition Media to release an animated series inspired by The Fresh Beats Collection on YouTube this fall.
Mattel invites VeeFriends character into ‘Masters of the Universe’. Mattel has announced a collaboration between VeeFriends, the contemporary entertainment company created by serial entrepreneur, Gary Vaynerchuk, and “Masters of the Universe.” This collaboration merges the characters of “Masters of the Universe” with VeeFriends to introduce “Skilled Skeleton,” alongside Skeletor from “Masters of the Universe”...
NECA announces toy and collectibles line for Wednesday series. NECA announced a full line of action figures, plush and collectibles to be released in partnership with MGM’s series Wednesday, streaming exclusively on Netflix. Directed by Tim Burton, the first season of the gothic mystery series follows Wednesday Addams as she enters Nevermore Academy.
Thunderbird Brands, tokidoki name Jazwares as global master toy licensee for ‘Mermicorno: Starfall’. Thunderbird Brands and tokidoki have named Jazwares as the global master toy licensee for Mermicorno: Starfall. The partnership will result in a new line of toys for the upcoming series. Mermicorno: Starfall is inspired by tokidoki’s Mermicorno characters, half-unicorn and half-mermaid creatures...
Spin Master releases Zombaes Critter Chaos zombie dolls. Just in time for the spookiest season of the year, The Zombaes Critter Chaos zombie dolls from Spin Master have arrived from the glamyard to deliver ‘spook-tacular’ fun this Halloween. These fashionable dolls feature gorgeous details, humorous names, adorable critter friends and a unique ‘un-coffin-ing’ unboxing.
MGA and Crayola sign multi-year deal for L.O.L. Surprise! Loves. MGA Entertainment and Crayola have announced a multi-year agreement for MGA to produce and distribute Crayola-inspired dolls and licensed merchandise globally under its L.O.L. Surprise! Loves brand. Beginning early 2024, MGA will create a line of L.O.L Surprise! Loves Crayola toys that it says will combine “outrageous fun, surprise and...
Hot Wheels Let’s Race series to debut on Netflix. Mattel has announced that its all-new animated children’s series, Hot Wheels Let’s Race, will debut on Netflix in Spring 2024. Mixing out-of-this-world vehicles, adventurous characters, high-octane races and more, the new Netflix series based on Mattel’s iconic Hot Wheels property promises to be a high-speed comedy thrill ride for the whole family.
Wow! Stuff features Real FX Thing at Toy Fair, New Trend presentation. British toy company Wow! Stuff has made its way to Toy Fair and can boast a product featured in the Toy Association’s New Trend Presentation. Wow! Stuff is known for its Real FX line, featuring realistic replica toys from popular licensed brands such as Jurassic Park.
Unleash the animatronic chaos with Funko Games’ Five Nights at Freddy’s Fightline. Ahead of GameStop Expo, Funko Games recently announced their all-new collectible battle board game, Five Nights at Freddy’s FightLine. Arriving this October exclusively at GameStop, the award-winning tabletop gaming studio will offer a Premier Set and expansive Character Packs to build teams and go head-to-head...
WildBrain and Mattel greenlight Fireman Sam season 16 and Polly Pocket season 6. WildBrain, a global leader in kids’ and family entertainment, and Mattel, Inc, owner of one of the strongest portfolios of children’s and family entertainment franchises in the world, announce new-season greenlights for beloved kids’ shows Fireman Sam and Polly Pocket, based on the popular Mattel brands.
Spin Master and Paramount sign global toy deal for Dora. Spin Master has announced it has been awarded the global toy licence for Paramount+ original Dora, an upcoming all-new pre-school series that marks the return of the groundbreaking Latina heroine and the newest property in Nickelodeon’s award-winning Dora the Explorer franchise. Spin Master’s diverse toy collection, expected to launch in autumn 2024...
CoComelon introduces ‘Nina’s Familia,’ bringing an authentic Mexican-American experience to kids entertainment. Moonbug Entertainment, a subsidiary of Candle Media, has announced the launch of Nina’s Familia, the newest CoComelon spinoff series starring JJ’s lovable, sporty classmate and friend, Nina Reyes. First debuting on CoComelon in 2019, Nina is ready to take on the world with all new ...
MGA’s Miniverse announces first-ever exclusive TikTok reality competition series, ‘Bite Size’. MGA Entertainment, one of the largest and fastest growing privately held toy companies in the world, has announced the premiere of its new reality competition series called Bite Size exclusively on TikTok, from its globally popular brand, MGA’s Miniverse, a booming miniature collectible brand recognized for its virality...
Warhammer plush is on the way from Tomy International. Games Workshop has granted licensed rights to Tomy International to develop plush for the Warhammer franchise, offering fans a new way to show their fandom. Tomy InternationalWarhammer will introduce a new line of plush in spring 2024 featuring Games Workshop’s Warhammer property.
Official Aquaman movie toys from SpinMaster : available now! Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, the long-awaited Warner Bros. blockbuster sequel starring Jason Momoa, hits theaters on Wednesday, Dec. 20th and concludes the decade-long DC Extended Universe. Get ready to cheer on Aquaman as he fights to protect his kingdom, his family, and the rest of the world from irreversible destruction.
Spin Master Entertainment, Nickelodeon Movies and Paramount Pictures announce third PAW Patrol feature film in the works. Spin Master Corp announced today that it will produce a third feature film for its preschool powerhouse franchise PAW Patrol. A Spin Master Entertainment production in association with Nickelodeon Movies, the film will be distributed by Paramount Pictures and is set for an exclusive...
People of Play
The LEGO Group has appointed Annette Stube as its Chief Sustainability Officer. Stube will join the company in January. In her new role, Stube will be responsible for leading LEGO’s environmental sustainability and strategy, and working with operations, product development, and marketing teams to deliver company-wide plans and targets. In addition, Stube will support the company’s external environmental...
CHITAG'S MARY COUZIN AND SPIN MASTER FOUNDERS INDUCTED INTO THE TOY INDUSTRY HALL OF FAME. ChiTAG's Mary Couzin, the founders of Spin Master, and others were inducted into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame on September 29, 2023. Other inductees included Ronnen Harary, Anton Rabie, and Ben Varadi, who co-founded Spin Master in 1994. They started the company with a single product idea and $10,000...
Longtime StudioCanal exec Françoise Guyonnet will be elevated into a new dual role in early 2024 that comes with C-Suite access. Guyonnet’s impending promotion to EVP of kids brands (a new position) and CEO of in-house licensing agency Copyrights Group represents the culmination of 17 years with the company. She’s currently serving as executive managing director of TV series, with a remit that covers...
Wind Sun Sky Entertainment (WSS) has expanded its content team with the hire of Robin Hays to fill a new VP of kids creative position. Hays is responsible for the strategic development and execution of all kids content, and will work on a number of projects spanning animation, live action and mixed media. She’ll initially focus on the conservation-themed IP Future Chicken, as well as contributing to...
Cloudco Entertainment proudly announces the arrival of Charlotte Payne, who steps into the role of Director of International Licensing, and Noelle Nuñez, who joins as Manager of Retail Development. Charlotte Payne takes the reins as the Director of International Licensing. Armed with over a decade of experience in international licensing, Charlotte honed her skills at Warner Brothers Discovery UK/EMEA.
***The above posted after tBR started running October 6th***
Henrietta Hurford-Jones, the creative director for indies at BBC Studios Kids & Family, will be departing after 13 and a half years at the BBC’s production and distribution arm. During her time at the BBC, she notably co-commissioned and executive produced the preschool phenomenon Bluey, as well as series like Hey Duggee, Go Jetters and Supertato.
Nicole Rivera has joined Kickstart Entertainment (My First Barbie) as VP of development. In this newly created role, she is responsible for building a slate of animated and live-action projects targeting kids and families. She’s also interested in international co-production partnerships. Based in LA, Rivera officially started this week, reporting to Kickstart president Heather Puttock and CEO Jason Netter.
Disney Branded Television has recruited kids media veteran Jenna Boyd as SVP of development. Boyd will oversee the scripted series development team and support an expansion of its multi-cam pipeline. She is also tasked with supervising the production of pilots for both Disney+ and Disney Channel. Based in LA, Boyd reports to Charlie Andrews, EVP of live action and unscripted at Disney Branded TV.
Sergiy Galyonkin, Epic Games' publishing strategy director, departs. Sergiy Galyonkin, the director of publishing strategy for Epic Games, is leaving the company after eight years. On X (née Twitter), he explained his departure was partially because he's "not a good fit for this new version of Epic; it requires people of a different kind." But he affirmed he plans to remain in the game industry in some capacity.
GameStop's new billionaire boss calls for 'extreme frugality' in email to staff. After years of pulling the strings from behind the scenes, GameStop chairman and billionaire Chewy founder Ryan Cohen appointed himself CEO of the ailing video game store on Thursday. His first email to staff, obtained by Kotaku, called for “extreme frugality” and said “time wasters” would not be tolerated as the meme stock company fights...
Magna-Tiles hires Christian Petersen to open office in Europe. Magna-Tiles is expanding its global footprint with a new key appointment. The magnetic building sets brand has brought on toy industry veteran Christian Petersen to oversee the opening of the first Magna-Tiles office in Europe. Before joining Magna-Tiles, Petersen held leadership roles in Asia, Europe, and Latin America.
Steiff announces retirement of Jim Pitocco, President of Steiff North America. Steiff has announced the retirement of Jim Pitocco as President of Steiff North America, effective December 31st, 2023. Pitocco will continue his long association with Steiff by transitioning to the Steiff North America board, where he will support the ongoing development of the organization on an as needed basis.
Zapf Creation appoints Trish Cooper as Sales manager. Zapf Creation has appointed Trish Cooper as new Sales manager. Trish joins the team with over 25 years’ sales experience, selling product across a breadth of industries, including publishing with Penguin Random House, stationery, gifting & homeware with ZAK Designs, and most recently the toy industry with MV Sports & Leisure.
Companies and Brands
LEGO Expands International Digital Office Workspace, Manufacturing Capacity. The LEGO Group recently revealed plans to expand its digital office in Copenhagen, Denmark, just a little more than a year after its opening. The company will also be seeing to the expansion of its Nyíregyháza, Hungary factory to meet the high demand for products.
Funko has announced that its new pop-up store will be in the departure hall of the newly renovated Terminal 2 at the world-famous Changi Airport from 6th October 2023. Voted Skytrax’s World’s Best Airport for the 12th time this year since 2000, passengers will now have access to world-famous collectibles as part of their travels. The 200sqm experiential space will be the first of its kind in Southeast Asia.
Amazon Studios has changed its name to Amazon MGM Studios, announced Pablo Iacoviello, director of monetization for local originals at the studio since April. During his keynote address to a packed audience at the TV forum Iberseries & Platino Industria, which kicked off Oct. 3 in Madrid, Iacoviello broke the announcement as he held forth on how the studio continues to explore new local production...
NSI International, the maker of Laser X – the #1 home laser tag system on the planet – announced today that it has shipped it 25 millionth Laser X blaster. Laser X – available at major retailers world-wide, including Target, Walmart, and Costco – allows players to play laser tag anywhere. Laser X is like having a laser tag arena right in your own backyard! Play anytime, any place, at a fraction of the cost of playing in...
It’s been 100 years since the Hassenfeld brothers created Hasbro, and one thing remains clear about the toy and game maker: The company knows how to appeal to a wide audience, spanning multiple generations. It can be argued the secret to the company’s long-standing success is its ability to bring iconic brands to fans of all ages through toys, consumer products, gaming, entertainment, live experiences...
Toys ‘R’ Us Set to Expand in the U.S. with Flagship Stores Opening in 2024. The move comes as part of WHP Global’s “Air, Land, and Sea” expansion plans for Toys “R” Us. You could call Geoffrey the Giraffe the comeback kid. On the eve of Toy Fair in New York, WHP Global, parent company of Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us, revealed plans to continue the rebirth of the famed toy store brand in the U.S. in partnership...
Dolu’s evolution from small company to global supplier. Publisher John Baulch visited Istanbul to see Dolu’s impressive purpose-built factory and warehouse facility, and to understand the advantages for UK and European retailers in dealing with a toy manufacturer a little closer to home. The Dolu company was originally set up in 1975 by Goksel and Gokhan’s father, Osman Dolu. Its first product was actually a mosquito...
Kappa Toys has revealed its plans to open a new location at Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. This will be the retailer’s third location, and first location outside of Las Vegas. At more than 5,000 square feet, this will be the biggest Kappa Toys yet. The store will feature special shop-in-shop brands including Tokidoki, Studio Ghibli, Rilakkuma, Sumikko Gurashi, and more.
Dr. Seuss Enterprises: Green eggs and giving: Dr. Seuss Enterprises keeps the author’s legacy alive through acts of kindness and philanthropy. Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not. Dr. Seuss wrote these words in 1971’s The Lorax, and today Dr. Seuss Enterprises keeps the caring going with a wide range of philanthropic endeavors.
Chinese toy company Pop Mart opens Beijing theme park. With its launch in 2010, Chinese toymaker Pop Mart set off a collectible craze with its anime-style figurines. Now, it’s amping up the hype further. Following in the footsteps of Disney and Studio Ghibli, Pop Mart has expanded into the theme park business, opening up its first in the Chinese capital of Beijing.
Puzzle Face puts kids’ faces on a 300-piece puzzle. Who’s face are you. Have you or the kids in your life ever dreamed of seeing your face on a puzzle? You’re in luck. As you could probably guess, Puzzle Face does just that! “Puzzle Face truly has that ‘wow’ factor,” says Sylvia Stein, President of StickTogether Products. “In addition to its ability to form billions of different images and be used an infinite number of times...
Hasbro launches first NERF official sport: NERFBALL. Hasbro has recently launched NERFBALL with the release of a full gameplay video of the NERFBALL — Battle in the Bubble exhibition game. NERFBALL marks the first official NERF sport throughout the brand’s 54 years of producing NERF products. The competitive game combines paintball-style play with the speed and agility of basketball.
TOMY International gears up for 100th anniversary with 2024 lineup. TOMY International is kicking off another century of smiles. Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2024, the company is coming to Toy Fair in New York City with the reveal of its 2024 lineup. Attendees will see toys and activities across numerous categories. In the games category, TOMY has expanded its collection with a variety of fun challenges...
American Girl Introduces Lila Monetti as 2024 Girl of the Year. American Girl has revealed its 2024 Girl of the Year, Lila Monetti. Each year, the Mattel brand unveils a new addition to the line, celebrating a wide range of interests and backgrounds to reflect growing up as an American girl today. Each doll has an intricate storyline and numerous accessories to match.
Tonies launches Spookley the Square Pumpkin figure. Just in time for Halloween, Tonies is launching a Spookley the Square Pumpkin figure for kids to listen to seasonal stories. Tonies are collectible characters that kids can place on top of a Toniebox to play different stories and audios that engage kids in screenless storytelling.
Licensing Marketplace BIP rebrands to Negosh.com. BIP, the global intellectual property (IP) licensing marketplace, has officially rebranded to Negosh.com. This evolution will make it easier to secure impactful licensing deals by offering added functionality, products, services, and an improved user experience to the platform’s more than 250 brands and 200 licensees in more than 25 countries.
Marbles race through the jungle in New GraviTrax Junior set from Ravensburger. Welcome to the jungle, marbles! Ravensburger‘s GraviTrax brand has been bringing the joy of designing marble paths to kids, teaching them about gravity, electricity, and more. Now, a new GraviTrax collection is hitting the scene and getting younger kids in on the fun of marble-racing action! GraviTrax Junior is a younger-themed...
Fisher-Price Little People launches diversity campaign for World Inclusion Day. The new sets have been created to give families of all kinds the chance to build a fully customisable toy set that best represents their unique family structure. The Little People FamilyKind campaign invites families from across the UK to visit littlepeoplefamilykind.com, where they can submit to build their own, one-of-a-kind Little People...
Halilit to represent Buki France in UK. Halilit is delighted to announce that as from 1st January 2024, Buki France’s extensive collection of educational toys and craft products will be available through the popular UK distributor. Established in 1992, the Buki France collection of toys has seen huge success across Europe, offering an extensive collection of items for girls and boys from pre-school to teens.
'Warhammer Underworlds: Deathgorge' heads to preorder. Games Workshop announced Warhammer Underworlds: Deathgorge, a new core set, will be available for preorder on October 7, 2023. The newest installment of Warhammer Underworlds takes place in the Deathgorge, which lies in the icy depths of Andtor.
Brotherwise Games will release 'Empires End'. Brotherwise Games will release Empires End, a new board game, into retail on November 29, 2023. This board game was designed by John D Clair, who recently did The Last Kingdom Board Game. It is a reverse bidding game where players manage an empire in decline. Players will need to keep their empire safe from natural disasters and raiders by collecting various resources.
'Mycelia' challenges players to be strategic fungi. Split Stone Games and Burnt Island Games are bringing Mycelia to the North American market thanks to a deal arranged by M.O.B. Vanguard. The "strategic mushroom" game will release in Q4 of 2024. Inspired by the life cycle of fungi, Mycelia puts players in control of a mycelium network competing for space and resources against other networks.
Launch of Sylvanian Families Baby Mermaid Castle creates celebrity splash. Epoch Making Toys launched the new Sylvanian Families Baby Mermaid Castle with a star-studded event hosted at The Haymarket Hotel’s glamourous swimming pool area. Strictly Come Dancing’s Nadiya Bychkova and her daughter pose with mermaids, Sarah and Grace.
United Wheels partners with Moons toy shop to offer dedicated branded bike store. The partnership has resulted in a dedicated branded space for displaying Huffy bikes alongside training, a large window display and an area to try the bikes out. In August, after trading for over 50 years on the High street, Moons Toy Store, previously Newmarket Toy Shop, moved a short distance to a larger premises.
Maillica Toys unveils Dreamland Buddies range. The Dreamland Buddies range comprises unique plush unicorns and dragons that help kids suffering with bad dreams, night terrors and daily anxieties. Maillica Toys has unveiled its unique Dreamland Buddies range of plush toys which offer comfort and support to children suffering with common night-time worries and day-to-day anxieties by safely capturing...
Zuru’s Mini Brands continues to dominate miniature space. With reports that a Zuru Mini Brands product is sold every 20 seconds in the UK alone, the company’s award-winning Mini Brands retains its position as the UK’s No. 1 property in Miscellaneous Toys YTD (Source: Circana, UK Retail Tracking, value sales, YTD August 2023), further cementing its stronghold and driving business and category growth within the market.
Konami reveals 'Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG: Maze of Millennia'. Konami Digital Entertainment revealed Maze of Millennia, a Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG booster set, for release into retail on January 19, 2024. Maze of Millennia contains long-thought-lost cards that were in the TV series as well as popular tournament-level cards.
Youtooz is giving ’90s kids yet another reason to indulge in nostalgia with its latest retro plush releases. The popular collectibles brand has unveiled two new Nickelodeon plushies based on the animated cartoon shows Catdog and Rugrats. The iconic, boisterous, orange Siamese twins from Catdog make their Youtooz plush debut, standing at 9 inches tall.
Gaming: Digital, Video, Hardware, and Development
Trump lawyer sports gamer laptop at $250 million fraud trial. Today is the first day of former president Donald Trump’s $250 million fraud trial in New York. One of his attorneys, Alina Habba, showed up with what appears to be an Asus ROG gaming laptop. Its RGB logo changed colors during the hearing.
Baldur's Gate 3 was September's most-played Steam Deck game. Nearly two months after release, Baldur's Gate 3 is continuing to make waves. According to Valve, Larian's RPG was the most-played Steam Deck game for the entire month of September. While specific numbers weren't given, Valve has previously revealed data for monthly games based on their average playtime.
Diablo IV is coming to Steam: Blizzard's ARPG will arrive on Valve's marketplace when season two goes live on October 17, 2023. Today, during Blizzard’s Diablo IV Developer Update livestream, members of the game’s dev team dove right into the myriad changes expected to arrive with the game’s next big update: Season of Blood. But tweaks to loot drops and XP rewards won’t be the only new experience for PC players...
Highlighted Press Releases
KIDS ARE REQUESTING MOOSH-MOOSH TO KICKOFF THEIR MOST SPOOKTACULAR SEASON YET! Pumpkins, Ghosts and Mummies And More Now Transformed Into 2023 Spooky Collection Of Soft & Whimsical Slipperz, Halloween Pillows, Starlight Buddies. Simi Valley, CA (October 4, 2023) — Before you buy the Halloween candy, get the slippers! Moosh-Moosh, makers of soft plushy toys and accessories, has an entire collection of not-too-spooky themed Slipperz ($16.99/teen size – $19.99/adult size) a dozen Halloween Pillows ($16.99) and six cuddly Starlight Buddies ($19.99). The spooktacular assortment, available now at moosh-moosh.com, lets kids (and grownups) know the unofficial start of autumn has arrived.
Safety and Counterfeiting
Safeguarding E-Commerce success: The importance of brand protection against counterfeits. The success of your brand can in many ways depend upon the success of your e-commerce strategy. At Amazon, we obsess over our customers and selling partners, and are dedicated to protecting our selling partners like you from counterfeiters that would threaten your brand and business. When a customer makes a purchase through e-commerce stores like Amazon, they should trust that they will receive an authentic product. …
Associations, Shows, Awards, Events, and Festivals
SPIEL ESSEN WRAPS UP THEIR BIGGEST EVENT EVER SPIEL, which took place between October 4-8, 2023 in Essen, Germany. The world's largest board game fair had over 193,000 game enthusiasts from 85 countries attend the fair. These large attendance numbers were made possible by a new hall concept laid out across a 62,600 square meter convention area. The new hall concept included arrangement of the halls...
***The above posted after October 6th***
Toy Association Reveals Upcoming Toy Fair Dates, Locations. Dates have been revealed for Toy Fair through 2028. The next Toy Fair will take place March 1-4, 2025 at the Javits Center in New York City. Following the 2025 event, Toy Fair will take place at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center from Jan. 17-20, 2026. Future confirmed dates are Jan. 9-12, 2027 and Jan. 15-18, 2028.
Women In Toys, Licensing & Entertainment unveils 2023 Wonder Women Award Winners in NYC. Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment (WiT) is proud to announce its 2023 Wonder Women Winners, who were celebrated at the 18th annual Wonder Women Awards at Pier 60, Chelsea Piers in New York City.
The Toy Foundation Reveals 2023 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Award Winners. The toy industry was back in action for an epic night of celebration in New York City. Last night, The Toy Foundation’s Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards returned to New York City for the first time since 2020. The Toy Book was in the house, live Tweeting (X-ing?) the winners as members of the industry gathered for The Toy Foundation’s annual fundraiser.
Moose Toys won two prestigious accolades, including Champion of Diversity & Inclusion for Art Director Brent Bell in the inaugural people-focused awards, and an inaugural Marketing Campaign of the Year Award (Silver) at the Toy Foundation’s 24th annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards. The TOTY Award winners were announced at an awards ceremony at Cipriani’s 42nd Street in New York City...
Wild Republic was established more than 40 yrs ago to support its founder, G.B. Pillai and his wife, Kamala Pillai’s love for children and wildlife, a promise the company has successfully delivered on for 4 decades. Its new Rainforest plush line in support of rainforest conservation along with hundreds of new plush and playsets at NY Toy Fair. The Toy Association also honors Wild Republic founder G.B. Pillai as a Champion...
The winner and three runners up in this year’s Kelvyn Gardner License This! competition were announced on Wednesday at Brand Licensing Europe, which runs from 4-6th October at ExCeL, London. Dubbed ‘the football training adventure for kids,’ Aniballers features six animated characters in a colourful world that take kids along a gamified training journey.
Mattel and The Design Museum London announce Barbie exhibition, Mattel has partnered with the Design Museum London, which will launch an exhibition exploring the story of Barbie™ through a design lens including fashion architecture, furniture and vehicle design , ahead of her 65th celebration year. The exhibition will open on July 5, 2024, and is curated by Danielle Thom at the Design Museum.
Spielwarenmesse readies for 2024 Game Inventors Convention. The Game Inventors Convention is approaching its second year after a successful debut at 2023 Spielwarenmesse. This year’s Game Inventors Convention welcomed more than 140 participants from 20 countries, fully booked with tabletop game newcomers hoping to meet with international game publishers.
Stray Gods crowned GOTY at 2023 Australian Game Developer Awards. Summerfall Studios' roleplaying musical Stray Gods was crowned Game of the Year at the 2023 Australian Game Developer Awards (AGDAs) in Melbourne. The title won over a judging panel comprising over 80 industry experts, who felt it "set a benchmark" for music design in games.
Breaking News: London Underground strikes called off ahead of BLE. News has broken that the planned London Underground tube strikes have been called off on Wednesday 4th October and Friday 6th October. This means all service is expected to resume as normal throughout London, as Brand Licensing Europe gets underway at London Excel.
Big Christmas Press Show secures ITV coverage for toy companies. ITV undertook filming with a number of toy companies at The Big Christmas Press Show, showcasing the latest products, trends and offerings across the retail sector in the lead up to the Golden Quarter. Organizer CIJ Group has announced the airing of broadcast coverage achieved at the show, with the strongest representation...
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
Pam Dobson. Toy World is sad to report that much-loved retailer Pam Dobson passed away last Friday, on the 29th September.
Ely’s Toys of Woodford Green was owned by Peter and Pam Dobson for many years. Peter passed away some years ago, and we are sad to announce the death of Pam on 29th September.
Elys Toys, which started life in 1920, closed in 2001, at the time citing growing competition from larger toy retailers and supermarkets. Peter and Pam were members of both Concorde Toys and Youngsters and were immensely popular throughout the toy trade. Many an agent used to remark what favourites they were on the territory.
Ely’s Toys was a traditional toy shop that was a popular part of the local community. Over the years Pam, Peter and their staff become friends with many of their customers, many of whom would visit the shop, not just to buy toys, but also just “for a chat and a laugh.” When the business closed, regular shoppers were dismayed and said they were very sad to see it go.
Pam and Peter met thanks to Pam’s brother, who was a good friend of Peter’s during his national service. The couple married in 1958, and shortly moved to London. Several years later, they took over Ely’s Toys, overseeing its expansion from a very small business to a much larger toy shop, a development which involved buying up the premises next door.
Toy World would like to add its condolences to Pam’s daughter Kim and her family at this very sad time.
Domenic Bettini, Director of Business Development at Playview Brands, passed away unexpectedly this morning, at the age of 55. Bettini was an esteemed expert in the toy industry and was recently appointed to his role as Director of Business Development. He was incredibly passionate and had a tremendous impact on the toy industry, with more than 20 years of notable success.
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