Retail Sales Down Slightly in August from July But Up Over 2016, NRF Reports

nrf1Retail sales in August decreased 0.2 percent from July on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the National Retail Federation. August sales increased 3.7 percent unadjusted year-over-year. The numbers exclude automobiles, gasoline stations, and restaurants. Year-over-year growth was up 3.4 percent on a three-month moving average. [Read more...]

North America Expected to Dominate Smart Toys Market by 2022

Transparency Market Research (TMR) reports that the global smart toys market is heavily dependent on product innovation, and that an increasing number of players are venturing into the competitive landscape.

Based on toy-type, the global smart toys market gains maximum demand for voice or image recognition toys, accounting for $2,271.7 million in 2017 and projected for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7 percent during the forecast period of 2017 to 2022. This segment is growing at $89.7 million annually over the course of the forecast period, and this absolute growth is larger than the any other segment. [Read more...]

U.S. Toy and Game Shipments Expected to Total $1.1 Billion in 2021

U.S. toy and game shipments are forecast to fall to $1.1 billion in 2021, according to Toys & Games: United States, a report recently released by Freedonia Focus Reports. Competition from imports, which already meet the vast majority of U.S. demand, will drive shipments to retreat.

U.S. demand for toys and games is forecast to expand 2.3 percent annually through 2021. Expansion of the population aged 35 to 44, which contains those most likely to have and buy toys for children, will drive gains. [Read more...]

TOMY International Taps Vincent D’Alleva as Chief Brand Officer

TOMY_blue_logoTOMY International Inc. appointed Vincent D’Alleva as its chief brand officer. D’Alleva, a veteran brand and marketing executive in the toy and infant product categories, will guide the brand, product and consumer marketing strategy for TOMY’s infant, toddler and preschool businesses. The appointment is effective immediately.

D’Alleva most recently served as senior vice president global brands/general manager of Mattel/Fisher-Price, leading worldwide strategy for the company’s largest preschool entertainment brands. Prior to that, D’Alleva honed his infant product experience as general manager at global feeding company Mayborn Group, after having served as executive vice president marketing and product development/general manager of Dorel Juvenile Group for seven years.

NRF Says Imports Hitting Monthly and Annual Records

nrf1Boosted by continuing sales growth, August is expected to be the busiest month on record for imports at the nation’s major retail container ports, and 2017 is on track to set a new annual high, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.  [Read more...]

Toy State’s Plans for Growth and Expansion Beyond Vehicles

Andy_Shirt3Toy State President Andy Friess Chats with The Toy Book.

Toy State is well known as an industry leader in the lights and sounds and R/C toy categories. How are you planning to expand your portfolio?

We’re proud Toy State has become the industry leader in toy vehicles, and we look forward to leading in that category for years to come. With that said, Toy State sees opportunities in non-vehicle categories where our expertise would be a perfect fit. I’m excited to bring the Toy State “magic” to additional retail aisles! [Read more...]

NPD Says Practicality Will Determine Back-to-School Shopping Trends

npd-group copyPractical decisions related to factors such as price, convenience, and product quality are on the top of consumers’ minds when it comes to where and how they do their back-to-school shopping, whether in-store or online, according to the new Back-to-School Report from The NPD Group[Read more...]

Toys “R” Us Reports Q1 Results

toysrus.croppedToys “R” Us reported financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2017, which ended April 29, 2017. Net loss increased $38 million to $168 million for the quarter, and consolidated adjusted EBITDA was $44 million for the quarter, a decline of $35 million.

Consolidated net sales were $2.2 billion, a decrease of $113 million compared to the prior year period. Excluding a $24 million negative impact from foreign currency translation, net sales declined by $89 million largely attributable to declines in the baby category. [Read more...]

Mattel Plans to Reinvent Company and Deliver Enhanced, Sustainable Growth

Mattel LogoMattel unveiled its strategic growth plan during the company’s Investor Day event in New York City. CEO Margo Georgiadis and members of the management team presented the strategic plan and the company’s medium-term financial framework.

Mattel’s clear strategy for growth is focused on building its Power Brands (American Girl, Barbie, Fisher-Price, Hot Wheels and Thomas & Friends) into 360-degree connected systems of play and experiences; accelerating growth in emerging markets; and transforming its innovation pipeline. Management anticipates that reshaping operations and reallocating resources will unlock substantial reinvestment funds for growth, and will improve speed to market. Mattel’s large base of consistent revenue from core brands will continue to produce ongoing cash flow; and the company will maintain a strong balance sheet to support its growth strategy. [Read more...]

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

KidsTime main photo

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 than 7,000 professional trade visitors and 474 exhibitors.

With overwhelming interest from exhibitors and buyers, the event organizers filled a total of seven exhibit halls, covering 16,292 square meters (more than 175,000 square feet), and had a wait list of nearly 100 manufacturers. Next year, the show organizers plan to add an eighth temporary hall to accommodate more curated exhibitors. The Targi Kielce Exhibition Center, home of Kids Time, is the second largest exhibition center in this part of Europe. [Read more...]