China Toy Fair


Auldey Toys North America to Launch Next Year, Appoints Adrian Roche as President

AudleyChina-based Guangdong Alpha Animation and Culture Co. Ltd. has created Auldey Toys North America, which will launch its new headquarters in Boston, Mass. The Auldey Toys subsidiary comes as the company prepares for 2015, which will feature a focus on its established boys, R/C, and vehicles lines.

Auldey Toys will also launch its first North American preschool animation program, Super Wings, which will air next year.

Auldey Toys North America has appointed Adrian Roche as the company president. Joining Auldey Toys after eight years as vice president of brands at Mega Brands, and previously serving as vice president at The First Years (Tomy), Roche brings significant experience in the boys and preschool categories.

Auldey Toys North America has retained ChizComm Ltd. as its marketing agency.

Mattel Reports Third Quarter Financial Results, Including Lower Barbie and Fisher-Price Sales

Mattel_logoLast Thursday, Mattel Inc. reported third quarter financial results, including net income of $331.8 million for the quarter, or $0.97 per share. This includes a negative impact of $0.05 per share from Mega Brands integration costs and a tax benefit of $0.04 per share. This compares to last year’s third quarter net income of $422.8 million, or $1.21 per share, which included a tax benefit of $0.05 per share.

For the quarter, net sales were $2.02 billion, down 8 percent compared to $2.21 billion last year, while on a regional basis, third quarter gross sales decreased 7 percent in the North American region. For the international region, gross sales decreased 7 percent, including an unfavorable impact of currency exchange rates of 1 percentage point. [Read more...]

Batman Honored by U.S. Postal Service with Limited Edition Forever Batman Stamps

Batman himself at New York Comic Con.

Last Thursday, the U.S. Postal Service, in collaboration with Warner Bros. Consumer Products and DC Entertainment, kicked off New York Comic Con 2014 at the Javitz Center by dedicating the Limited Edition Forever Batman Stamps. Eight commemorative Batman designs were revealed, depicting Batman from the four distinct eras of comic book history, and including the various incarnations of the famed Bat emblem.

Four versions of Batman are depicted from the four eras of comic book history: the Modern Age, the Bronze Age, the Silver Age, and the Golden Age. In addition, there are four incarnations of the famed Bat-Signal, the spotlight that Gotham City Police Commissioner James Gordon sends into the night sky to summon Batman.

The Batman Limited Edition stamps are being issued as Forever stamps and will be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce price. Customers may purchase them at usps.com/stamps, the Postal Store, at 1-(800)-STAMP24 (800-782-6724), and at post offices nationwide.

Madame Alexander Goes International with New Line of Dolls

madamealexanderThe Madame Alexander Doll Company’s new play doll series, Travel Friends–International Collection, will showcase nine countries and encourage children to learn about and embrace a variety of cultures from around the world.

Each doll welcomes kids into her world with a Hello! from her county and offers fun facts and highlights of interesting places to explore in her hometown. The 7-inch dolls are sized for playful portability and crafted with details of each country’s cultures and costumes.

The countries in the series are France, Italy, India, Kenya, Ireland, Mexico, Germany, China, and Russia. The bendable and posable dolls are the first collection in an ongoing Madame Alexander Play series designed for kids ages 3 and up.

TIF’s Toy Bank Receives Mega Donation from Waba Fun LLC

The Toy Bank

Waba Fun LLC recently donated $105,000 worth of Superstructs Mega Sets to the Toy Industry Foundation’s (TIF) Toy Bank, which donates toys and games to children who are battling life-threatening illnesses, living in poverty, and otherwise in need.

Charities benefiting from this donation include Al’s Angels in Westport, Conn., P.E.A.C.E. in Syracuse, N.Y., and Circulo de la Hispanidad, Inc. in Long Beach, N.Y.

The Toy Bank is stocked with donations from manufacturers, retailers, and distributors. These gifts are generally distributed through The Toy Bank’s network of 1,000 charities across the nation and around the world to foster kids, children living on U.S. military bases, children who are ill, impoverished, affected by natural disasters, or living through other stressful situations.

Spirit Halloween to Host Annual Spirit of Children Program

SpiritofChildrenSpirit Halloween will continue its annual Spirit of Children program, which brings Halloween cheer and festivities to hospitalized children by hosting more than 84 events in conjunction with Child Life departments throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Special guests at select Spirit of Children parties will include Warner Brothers’ Batman, Saban‘s Power Rangers Super Megaforce; Nickelodeon‘s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer, and Bubble Guppies; DreamWorks Animation‘s Puss in Boots, Skipper from Penguins of Madagascar, and more.

This year, Spirit of Children’s goal is to raise $5.2 million—bringing its total contribution to more than $21 million donated since the program’s inception in 2006.

Shoppers can donate to the Spirit of Children program online or in a Spirit Halloween location. The funds raised will go to the location’s closest hospital. Spirit Halloween shoppers who make at least a $2 donation will receive a Spirit of Children bracelet.

All funds raised are donated to participating Child Life departments across North America and focus on the emotional and psychological well being of hospitalized children while doctors and nurses focus on their medical needs.

Discovery Family Channel to Air Latest My Little Pony Equestria Girls Film

Discovery Family Equestria GirlsDiscovery Family Channel (formerly Hub Network) has obtained exclusive broadcast rights to Hasbro StudiosMy Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks film. It will air on October 17 at 3:30 p.m. ET/12:30 p.m. PT.

This is the second film featuring the My Little Pony characters that are magically transformed into teenage girls in high school. The first movie premiered last June.

Sooty Heads to Australia, New Zealand Following BBC Worldwide Partnership

Oct7.SootyRedan Alchemy LLP has named BBC Worldwide as the official licensing and merchandise agent for the Sooty brand in Australia and New Zealand.

BBC Worldwide ANZ will represent Sooty across television, merchandise, theatrical, and digital rights, including distribution of the kids TV program The Sooty Show.

Sooty, the yellow bear that made his TV debut on the BBC’s Talent Night in the 1950’s, has recently been revived for a new generation of fans in the UK with The Sooty Show airing daily on CITV.

 

 

 

Disney Consumer Products Halloween Trends and Fun Facts

i-qdtZwdd-MDisney Consumer Products has unveiled trends and fun facts about Halloween:

  • The first Halloween costume appeared in 1911.
  • The first Minnie Mouse and Mickey Mouse costumes were introduced in 1932.
  • More than 2.1 million kids will be super heroes this Halloween.
  • Spider-Man has been a top-five costume for the last 10 years.
  • Fifty percent of families will carve a pumpkin.
  • In years with theatrical releases, up to 10 million lightsabers have been sold in a single year.
  • $350 million will be spent on costumes for pets.
  • Cinderella has been the most popular costume in Disney Store history.
  • Disney’s Frozen was ranked number one most searched Halloween costumes.
  • Sofia the First was the top selling costume at Disney Store last year.

NRF Offers Optimistic Forecast for Holiday Sales and Hires

The National Retail Federation (NRF) expects sales (excluding auto, gas, and restaurant sales) to increase 4.1 percent to $616.9 billion in November and December, higher than 2013’s 3.1 percent increase during that same time frame. This would mark the first time since 2011 that holiday sales would increase more than 4 percent.

Holiday sales on average have grown 2.9 percent over the past 10 years, including 2014’s estimates, and are expected to represent approximately 19.2 percent of the retail industry’s annual sales of $3.2 trillion.

NRF’s holiday sales forecast is based on an economic model using several indicators including consumer credit, disposable personal income, and previous monthly retail sales releases. It now includes direct-to-consumer, kiosk, and online sales.

Additionally, NRF expects between 725,000 and 800,000 new seasonal employers for the holiday shopping season, potentially more than retailers hired in 2013.

NRF’s shop.org division expects online sales to grow 8 to 11 percent more than last holiday season.

Click here for more information about the studies.