March 12, 2020
Coronavirus Impact on U.S. Imports to Last Longer Than Expected, NRF Says

The supply chain disruption caused by the global spread of the novel coronavirus disease COVID-19 is now expected to have a bigger impact on U.S. imports than originally anticipated. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates’ latest Global Port Tracker report, the impact of the outbreak will be both longer and larger as factory closures and travel restrictions in China and beyond continue to ripple through the shipping channels. Read more…
Target Gains $1.7 Billion in Toy, Baby Sales Since Toys “R” Us Closure

Toy sales have shifted, and Amazon and Target look to be the two biggest benefactors. For holiday 2019, Amazon says it had its biggest toy year ever, and Target has now assigned a number to just how much market share it has gained since the 2018 closure of Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us stores in the U.S. Read more…
Gray Matter Games’ Joe Barron Appears on the ‘Power Kid Podcast’

In this week’s episode of the “Power Kid Podcast,” host Phil Albritton of Power Kid Design speaks with Joe Barron, founder of Gray Matter Games. Barron has designed and published four games, which are sold in more than 3,000 stores across five countries. Listen here…

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ASTRA Offers Coronavirus Update on Marketplace & Academy

The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) issued a response to member and community concerns ahead of the organization’s annual Marketplace & Academy, scheduled to take place from June 7-10 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. At this time, ASTRA says that it has no plans to postpone or cancel the event. Read more…
E3 Canceled Due to Coronavirus Concerns   

This year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) is the latest industry event to be canceled due to concerns related to COVID-19. According to a statement posted on the E3 site, the video game trade show — originally scheduled for June 9-11 — will not be rescheduled, and the Entertainment Software Association team will reach out to exhibitors and attendees directly with information about full refunds. Read more…
Emerald City Comic Con Postponed Amid Coronavirus Fears

Reedpop will postpone Emerald City Comic Con (ECCC) until the summer after local health officials indicated that all conventions in Seattle should postpone. All fans will receive refunds on their tickets, no action necessary. Read more...
LEGO Partners with Super Mario

LEGO dropped a potential licensing bomb this week in the form of a mysterious tweet: The manufacturer will partner with Super Mario. The tweet features a 7-second video showcasing a LEGO-fied Mario and question marks, and the words “‘It’s-a me, LEGO Mario!’ Stay tuned…”   Read more…
Blue Plate Media Services Celebrates 20 Years with 5 Strategies for 2020 Media Plans

Led by President and CEO David Becker, BPMS provides media services for companies in the toy, game, gaming, entertainment, publishing, and consumer products industries in North America. The company is known for its strong emphasis and expertise in youth and family marketing. Read more…
eOne Zooms into Latin America with New Retail Distribution Partners

eOne, which was recently acquired by Hasbro, appointed Sunny as its master toy distributor for Ricky Zoom and Peppa Pig toys in Brazil, including TOMY’s recently launched core assortment of Ricky Zoom products and top items from the Peppa Pig range. The Ricky Zoom collection makes its debut at Abrin Toy Fair this week and will be available at retail in Brazil beginning in May. Families in Mexico will find Ricky Zoom racing into stores later this year. Read more…
ZAG’s ‘Power Players’ Goes Global with Netflix, New Broadcast Deals

ZAG inked new deals to bring the first two seasons of Power Players to an even bigger audience around the globe.The series, which premiered on Cartoon Network in the U.S. last fall, made its debut on Netflix last Friday as a result of a non-exclusive global SVOD deal with the streaming giant. Read more…
Cartoon Network, Outright Games Team Up for New Ben 10 Video Game

Cartoon Network is partnering with publisher Outright Games to create a new video game set within the world of Ben 10 . The popular animated series is currently in its fourth season on Cartoon Network. The game is developed by studio PHL Collective and will launch for consoles and PC later this year. Read more…
Little Rebels Makes Kickstarter Debut on International Women’s Day

The line of plush dolls and books from creator Marjorie Spitalnik launched its latest crowdfunding effort this past Sunday in honor of International Women’s Day. Little Rebels celebrates the stories of female icons including Malala Yousafzai, Amelia Earhart, and Marie Curie. Read more…
GreenLight Collectibles Renews Licensing Agreement with CBS, Expands Retail into Target

Indiana-based GreenLight Collectibles and CBS have renewed their licensing partnership with a new agreement that extends through 2022. Beginning March 15, select Target locations will carry a selection of products from some of GreenLight’s top lines of die-cast vehicles including the 1:64 and 1:24-scale Hollywood collections and the 1:64-scale Kings of Crunch monster trucks. Read more…
State of the Industry Q&A: MGA Entertainment

The Toy Book spoke with Isaac Larian, founder and CEO of MGA Entertainment, about several key topics for the year, including shifting business strategies, trends for the year, sustainability in toys, and more. Read more…
State of the Industry Q&A: ASTRA

In the Toy Book ‘s annual State of the Industry Q&A, ASTRA’s President Kimberly Mosley addressed a number of issues facing the specialty toy industry, including a resolution to tariffs, competing with big-box retailers, and more. Read more…
State of the Industry Q&A: ChizComm

Harold Chizick, CEO of ChizComm and Beacon Media, spoke with the Toy Book about the changing landscape for content creators, shifting digital media strategies, and more in the annual State of the Industry Q&A. Read more…
State of the Industry Q&A: Jada Toys

The Toy Book caught up with Amy Austin, director of licensing at Jada Toys, about integrating fandoms into its product offering and how securing the right license makes all the difference as a manufacturer. Read more…
Nintendo, Walmart, and Meijer Vets Join GameStop Board of Directors

Texas-based GameStop is shaking up its board of directors in its latest effort to course-correct its faltering business. The company added a trio of heavy-hitters to its board this week including former Nintendo of America President and COO Reginald “Reggie” Fils-Aimé; former Walmart U.S. President and CEO William “Bill” Simon; and Petsmart President and CEO James “J.K.” Symancyk, formerly of Meijer. Simon and Symancyk join the Board immediately while Fils-Aimé joins on April 20. Read more…
Funko Delivers 16% Full-Year Sales Increase for 2019

Following the preliminary reports that it hit an unusual snag in the fourth quarter of last year, Washington-based Funko reported a 16% full-year sales increase for 2019 despite the Q4 drop. The company cites a 20% increase in active properties as contributing to the full-year sales boost. Read more…
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Jackie Breyer

Editor-in-Chief:
Maddie Michalik

Copy Chief:
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Toy Report Editor:
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Jackie Cucco

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Ali Mierzejewski

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