NRF Survey Says Retail Shrink Increased to $48.9 Billion in 2016

NRFThefts from retailers and other inventory “shrink” grew to $48.9 billion in 2016 from $45.2 billion the year before even as budget constraints left retail security budgets flat or declining, according to the annual National Retail Security Survey released today by the National Retail Federation and the University of Florida. The thefts amounted to 1.44 percent of sales, up from 1.38 percent. [Read More...]

WIT Hosts Summertime Referral Contest

WITLogoWomen in Toys, Licensing, and Entertainment (WIT) is hosting a referral contest from June through September. The chapter with the highest percentage of new members brought in through referrals will win $100 to be used toward any event and a Project Genius brainteaser bundle valued at $500 for the winning chapter’s local charity or school of choice. Plus, referring a member will receive $25 off their next WIT membership renewal.

To participate, have a friend fill out an application here and make sure the “Who Referred You?” box is filled out.

Lego Dimensions Reveals New Teen Titans Go! Trailer

WBIETeenTitansGOWarner Bros. Interactive Entertainment released a new trailer providing a look at the DC Super Heroes along with a glimpse of the new Teen Titans Go! Adventure World and Battle Arena.

The Teen Titans Go! Fun Pack and Team Pack is set to release on September 12 as part of the LEGO Dimensions Wave 9 launch, alongside the Powerpuff Girls Team Pack and Fun Pack and the Beetlejuice Fun Pack. The Teen Titans Go! packs access an exclusive in-game episode that can only be found in LEGO Dimensions.

NPD Reports May 2017 Video Game Sales

npd-group copyTotal industry spending for video game hardware, software, and accessories from Apr. 30 to May 3, 2017 declined 11 percent to $542 million compared to last year, according to analysis from The NPD Group. [Read More...]

Zuru Launches #FreeYourFidget Campaign

ZURU_Fidget CubeZuru is kicking off the launch of its fidget toys—including The Original Fidget Cube and the Zuru Spiner—at retailers worldwide with a #FreeTheFidget campaign. The fully integrated global marketing campaign spans TV, digital, and PR, and encourages everyone of all ages to freely fidget. [Read More...]

Peaceable Kingdom Launches Monthly Facebook Live Series

PeaceableKingdomPeaceable Kingdom is set to launch its monthly Facebook Live series, Peaceable Perspectives, to bring topics related to child development and social emotional skills into the spotlight.

The series will feature experts who highlight issues such as empathy, anxiety, bullying prevention, kindness, resilience, and play. It also offers parents advice and tips on these sometimes sensitive topics.

[Read More...]

Registration Open for WIT Empowerment Day

womenintoysThe Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment (WIT)’s Empowerment Day will be on Oct. 2 this year, the day before the Fall Toy Preview in Dallas. WIT Empowerment Day is held in collaboration with Walmart and will feature product pitches, mentorship, and face-to-face connections with various members of the industry.

The goal of the event is to help entrepreneurs, manufacturers, inventors, and business owners to strengthen their career in toys, games, licensing, and entertainment. Members of WIT will be able to pitch their products to Walmart buyers and pitch products and concepts to companies such as Hasbro, Spin Master, PlayMonster, and Jazwares for licensing or feedback. Opportunities for “Ask an Expert” Info Sessions and “Looking to Launch” Bootcamp sessions will also be available for members.

[Read More...]

NPD Study Shows Toys and Technology Drive Licensed Sales for Kids in the U.S.

npd_statsAccording to the U.S. Kids License Report from The NPD Group, video games, electronics, and apps make up a combined 22 percent of kids’ licensed product dollar sales in the U.S.

This is on par with the volume represented by toys, which is the number one licensed industry at most retailers. [Read More...]

Ken Joins Barbie Fashionistas Line with 15 New Dolls

2017Ken_Photogroup

Today, Mattel is expanding its line of Fashionistas dolls with 15 new and diverse Ken dolls, featuring three body types—slim, broad, and original—and a variety of skin tones, eye colors, hairstyles, and fashion looks.

Last year, the Barbie Fashionista line expanded with three new Barbie body types—tall, curvy, and petite—along with new skin tones, eye colors, hairstyles, and on-trend fashions and accessories. [Read More...]

ASTRA Reveals 2017 Winners of Excellence Awards

astra_logo_smallThe American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) announced the 2017 winners of ASTRA’s Excellence Awards.

The winners were Co-Owners Erin Blanton and Susan Blanton of Pufferbellies Toys and Books for Children in Staunton, VA for Retailer of the Year; HABA in Skaneateles, NY for Manufacturer of the Year; Kimberly Leakas from 24/7 Sales in New York, NY for Sales Representative of the Year; and Elizabeth Royall of Toy Travelers International in High Point, NC for the Young Professional Rising Star of the Year.

Hasbro Launches Its First Gaming Subscription Service

gamecrate-300x206Consumers can now sign up for Hasbro’s first subscription service, Hasbro Gaming Crate. This program offers an exclusive collection of games curated by Hasbro Gaming experts that will be delivered straight to subscriber doors every three months starting this fall.

There are two types of crates, each containing three games. The Party Crate is packed with content geared toward college students, young adults, and parents who are looking to enjoy “adults-only” game nights.  The Family Crate offers games designed to be played together and enjoyed equally by kids and adults. [Read More...]

News

Online Registration For Kids Turkey Opens on June 28

Spielwarenmesse Middle East Fuarcılık Ltd. Şti., a subsidiary of Spielwarenmesse eG, is inviting toy experts to Kids Turkey taking place from October 26 to 29. The Turkish trade show brings together representatives of the toy industry from Turkey and other countries in the Near and Middle East. The World of Toys by Spielwarenmesse eG will [...]

Jakks Retires $12.0 Million of Company’s 2018 Convertible Senior Notes

Jakks Pacific Inc. agreed with holders of its Convertible Senior Notes due in 2018 to redeem $12.0 million face amount of such notes for approximately $11.4 million in cash and 112,400 shares of its common stock. After such redemption the balance of the face amount of the 2018 Notes will have been reduced to approximately $42.7 million from approximately $54.7 million.

NPD Reports May 2017 Video Game Sales

Total industry spending for video game hardware, software, and accessories from Apr. 30 to May 3, 2017 declined 11 percent to $542 million compared to last year, according to analysis from The NPD Group.

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Articles

ToyState_NikkoAirRaceVision

Flying High-Tech

Toy Drones Fly to New Heights Although it seems like they’re becoming commonplace in the R/C aisle, the concept of a flying R/C is actually still quite novel in the category. The progression from ground R/C to difficult-to-fly helicopters to slightly more stable quadcopters led us to where we are now: within constant search of [...]

Teddy Ruxpin, from Wicked Cool Toys

Let Plush Do the Talking

How Storytelling Plush Is Sparking Imagination in a New Generation of Kids Thanks to a backlash against tech-toy overload, classic play is alive and well. Plush is among the most traditional of classic toys, and is reaping the benefits of millennial parents’ desire to reign in the tech, yet still provide innovative and nostalgic toys [...]

Katarzyna Wawer of Smily Play stated that all of the company’s products offer good quality, play value, and parental guidelines for a reasonable price.

Kids Time Fair 2017: A Look Inside Central and Eastern Europe’s Largest Toy Fair

by Reyne Rice and Lena Hedo The largest trade show for toys, games, and children’s products in Central and Eastern Europe, Kids Time 2017, was held in Kielce, Poland, from Feb. 23 to 25. The eighth annual international fair featured toys and products for babies and children, and recorded double-digit growth in key measurements, including more [...]

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