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…]

Coloring and Craft-Related Products Sales Grow Double Digits Ahead of Easter

NPDGroupFrom slime and foam to coloring and crafts, the latest trends around creative expression are driving U.S. sales of office supplies ahead of Easter, according to The NPD Group. The double-digit sales growth seen across coloring and art related categories suggests that a different wave of items may be joining the chocolate bunnies and stuffed animals in Easter baskets this year. [Read more…]

TIA to Host Washington, DC Fly-In Tax Debate for Toy Companies

As momentum builds on tax reform, trade, and regulatory reduction, the Toy Industry Association (TIA) is urging its members to attend TIA’s 9th Washington, DC Fly-In, where toy companies can share their concerns with key lawmakers. With the debate on healthcare reform now on the back burner, congressional and Trump administration officials are turning their attention to tax reform, including the controversial Border Adjustment Tax.  [Read more…]

Spin Master Reports Q4 and Full Year 2016 Financial Results

Spin Master Corp LogoSpin Master Corp. announced financial results for the year ended Dec. 31, 2016. Highlights include an increased revenue of $338.4 million, up 30.9 percent from $258.4 million in Q4 2015. Excluding revenue from Swimways Corp., which was acquired in Q3 2016, Q4 revenue grew 26.1 percent.

In Constant Currency terms, revenue increased by 33.9 percent relative to Q4 2015. Gross Product Sales increased 30.9 percent to $376.2 million, compared to $287.5 million in Q4 2015, driven by sales of Paw Patrol and Hatchimals, which more than offset declines in Meccano, Kinetic Sand, and Air Hogs Star Wars products. Excluding Swimways, Gross Product Sales grew 26.3 percent.

Other Revenue, which primarily reflects merchandising royalty and television distribution income from products marketed by third parties using Spin Master’s owned intellectual property, as well as app revenue from Toca Boca and Sago Mini (acquired in Q2 2016), increased 53.8 percent to $12.3 million from US$8.0 million in Q4 2015.

Gross profit in Q4 2016 increased 30.7 percent to $172.0 million, representing 50.8 percent of revenue, compared with $131.6 million, or 50.9 percent of revenue in the comparable period last year, reflecting higher sales volume

Adjusted Net Income was $9.3 million, or $0.09 per share, compared to $6.7 million, or $0.07 per share, in Q4 2015. Adjusted EBITDA was $22.9 million in Q4 2016 compared with US$13.6 million in Q4 2015.

Toys: By the Numbers

The NPD Group looks at the biggest growth drivers of 2016, and touches on what the new year will bring.

by Juli Lennett, U.S. Toys Industry Analyst, The NPD Group

Crossing the $20 billion threshold, the U.S. toy industry grew 5 percent to $20.4 billion in 2016, according to retail sales data* from global information company The NPD Group. Unit sales also grew 5 percent to $2 billion, and average retail price remained flat at $10.14. The industry was 16 percent larger in 2016 than 2013, which calculates to a compounded annual growth rate of 5 percent. [Read more…]

COMMENTARY: An Important Step for Play: Mattel’s “Dads Who Play Barbie”

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by James Zahn

It’s incredible how much things can change in what seems, on one hand, to be a few short years, but on another, the result of decades of struggle. As my wife and I celebrate our eighth year of parenting, it’s hard to believe that I, as the father of two girls, have already spent the better part of a decade invested not only in the development of two beautiful human beings, but also in carrying a torch for play. [Read more…]

China Toy and Kids Expo 2016 Issues a Challenge to International Brands

More exhibition space, more exhibitors, and more visitors: China Kids and Toy Expo is growing fast, just like Chinese population and its needs. With the new two-child policy, effective from January 1st, 2016, and the middle class growing its revenue, there’s more room for international brands. Are they ready to take up the challenge?

by Laila Caroli, contributor to the Italian trade magazine Il Giornale dell’Infanzia, BCMI member

The China Kids and Toy Expo, held from Oct. 19 to 21, 2016 at the Shanghai New International Expo Center, set new benchmarks in terms of visitors and international participation. The show had 65,467 attendes from 130 countries and regions, and nearly 500 international brands from 20 countries and regions (up 30 percent compared to the year prior). [Read more…]