August 13, 2020
The Toy Insider Prepares to Unwrap Holiday of Play @ Home

Following the success of its first-ever virtual event Sweet Suite @ Home, the Toy Insider is getting ready to help sleigh the holiday shopping season.

Set to take place on Oct. 22, the Toy Insider’s 9th annual Holiday of Play event is going virtual this year as Holiday of Play @ Home, an exclusive, invite-only media event designed for press, bloggers, influencers, and content creators to get up close and personal with the hottest toys of the holiday season in a fully immersive, 360-degree 3D interactive show floor environment. Read more…
FAO Schwarz Reopens NYC Flagship with New Safety Measures, Brand Experiences

The iconic toy soldiers at FAO Schwarz have been “fine-tuning their piano keys” over the past few months in order to get back into the business of play during the COVID-19 era. The company’s flagship store in New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza has reopened with new safety and wellness measures in place to protect customers and store staff. Read more…
U.S. Retail Imports Head Toward Lowest Number Since 2016

The recent 16% spike for the toy industry was driven largely by sales of stock-on-hand, while individual toymakers have charted sales declines due in part to a reduction in orders of new products. This pattern extends to the rest of the consumer products and retail industry as a whole, as shown in the latest Global Port Tracker report issued by the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates. Read more…
Spielwarenmesse to Take Place with Hygiene Protocols

Spielwarenmesse eG, the organizer of the 72nd Spielwarenmesse international toy fair, is moving ahead with plans for the event to take place Jan. 27-31 in Nuremberg, Germany. In an effort to ensure the greatest possible degree of safety, the organizers are collaborating with venue operator NürnbergMesse and local authorities to create a definitive “Health & Hygiene Concept” for the show. Read more…
ReedPop Cancels New York Comic Con

While there will be no in-person event at the Javits Center this fall due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ReedPop will partner with YouTube for a digital version of New York Comic Con. From Oct. 8-11, the New York Comic Con YouTube channel will exclusively stream panels from Starz, CBS All Access, DreamWorks Animation, Hulu, FX, and more. Read more…
DC Direct Shuttered Amid WarnerMedia Restructuring

As part of sweeping restructuring at its parent company WarnerMedia (under new owner AT&T), DC Direct would be shuttered. Launched in 1998, DC Direct marketed a collector-focused range of action figures, statues, prop replicas, and other items.  Read more…
Mattel Unveils New Masters of the Universe Toys at Power Con

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (MOTU) are on the road to a powerful comeback. Ahead of next year’s release of two new series on Netflix, Mattel took to this year’s virtual edition of Power Con to pull back the curtain on a new range of MOTU products, some of which position the brand in new categories for kids and collectors alike. New offerings include an expanded range of Mega Construx building sets, a MOTU-themed UNO, the first-ever MOTU tabletop role-playing game, and the franchise’s first preschool-centric Fisher-Price toys. Read more…
Get Your Boo On with New Halloween Squishmallows

Kellytoy — a subsidiary of Jazwares — is releasing more than a dozen bootiful additions to the Squishmallows Halloween squad. Frightfully delightful new additions include Vince the vampire, Wade the werewolf, Paxton the pirate pumpkin, Winnie the purple witch girl, a skeleton squad full of band members, and their bouncer: Stump the blue skeleton cat. Read more…
Fisher-Price Debuts Work-from-home Preschool Set, Other Grown-up-inspired Toys

As parents and companies adapt to doing business in the COVID-19 era, the home office has become a necessity for most. Just weeks after memes circulated showing off a fan-created Fisher-Price “Work-From-Home Playset,” Mattel has pulled back the curtain on the real deal and other preschool role-play sets inspired by grown-up careers and activities. Read more…
Build the Buzz of the Big City with LEGO City Main Square

The latest product from The LEGO Group is set in the world of LEGO City from Nickelodeon’s LEGO City Adventures TV series. Builders can visit City Hall, take a ride on the tram, visit the classic diner, or take the spotlight on the concert stage with 14 mini-figures that fans will recognize from the show. Read more…
TOMS x Hasbro’s Candy Land Is a Sweet Collaboration

The sugary, sweet colors of Candy Land are traveling a little closer to this land. TOMS dropped a line of footwear inspired by the classic board game. The colorful slip-ons feature fan-favorites Queen Frostine and Princess Lolly, the Candy Land logo, and, of course, some sweet treats. Read more...
Yottoy Founder Kate Clark Talks Plush on the ‘Power Kid Podcast’

In this week’s episode of the “Power Kid Podcast,” host Phil Albritton of Power Kid Design speaks Kate Clark, founder of Yottoy. For the past 25 years, Yottoy has been creating plush toys based on top licenses, including Paddington, Eloise, Madeline, The Velveteen Rabbit, Babar, Corduroy, and more. Listen here…

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DJ Marshmello Gets Animated in Mellodees’ ‘Wheels on the Bus’

When we last caught up with Marshmello, the popular EDM DJ was launching a new kids brand alongside manager Moe Shalizi. Now that the musically driven Mellodees has been out for a few weeks, the DJ himself is jumping into the animated action. Lil’ Mello makes his debut as a boppin’ bus driver in a new version of “Wheels on the Bus” that’s firmly targeting a new generation of preschoolers and their millennial parents. Read more…
Delanie West Appointed to Women in Toys’ Board of Directors as Diversity & Inclusion Chair

In her new role, West will lead WIT’s efforts to foster diversity, inclusion, and belonging in the industry throughout WIT’s global community. She will also lead the development of Black Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment (B-WIT), a new initiative focused on attracting, recruiting, spotlighting, and advocating for Black women in the industry. Read more…
Toy Industry Mourns the Passing of Former Mattel CEO Bryan G. Stockton

Stockton joined Mattel in 2000 as executive vice president of business planning and development, eventually moving up to CEO (2012-2015) and chairman (2013-2015). Stockton died in a car accent alongside his friend, attorney Peter Devereaux. Read more…
Funko Takes 49% Sales Hit in Q2; Looks to Diversification, The Mandalorian Tailwind

Funko, Inc. beat expectations in the second quarter with a 49% decline in sales amid the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. Heading into Q2, the company preemptively cautioned a decline of as much as 60% due to retail closures and the lack of live events. Read more…
 
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