Mezco Inks Deal for Bugs Bunny

Mezco,BugsBunnyMezco Toyz is set to immortalize Bugs Bunny as part of a new licensing agreement, with a planned third quarter release date for product.

Since his debut on screens in Porky’s Hare Hunt in 1938, Bugs Bunny has appeared in more than 200 cartoons, as well as numerous films. He was also the first cartoon character to appear on a postage stamp and to have his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Iconix Signs Agreement to Acquire Strawberry Shortcake Brand

StrawberryShortcakeIconix Brand Group Inc. has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the Strawberry Shortcake brand and related intangible assets from American Greetings for $105 million in cash. [Read more...]

Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner to Become Chairman

Hasbro logoHasbro President and CEO Brian Goldner will become chairman on May 21, the date of the toy maker’s annual shareholder meeting, according to Hasbro this past Thursday. Goldner has been Hasbro’s president and CEO since 2008.

Chairman Al Verrecchia will step down in accordance with the company’s target retirement age of 72. Four other Hasbro directors will also retire from the board because they are close to retirement age: Frank Biondi Jr., John Connors Jr., Michael Garrett, and Jack Greenberg.

Hasbro has stated that current director Basil Anderson will become its lead independent director. The company is scheduled to report its fourth-quarter results tomorrow.

Activision Blizzard Announces Record Fourth Quarter and Full Year Earnings Per Share

On Thursday, Activision Blizzard Inc. announced record fourth quarter and full year earnings per share. For calendar year 2014, Activision Blizzard delivered record non-GAAP earnings per diluted share of $1.42, compared to $0.94 per diluted share for the previous year. On a GAAP basis, the company delivered record earnings per diluted share of $1.13, compared to $0.95 per diluted share for the prior year. [Read more...]

Hog Wild Named Exclusive Manufacturer and Distributor of AquaPod

AquaPodBottleLauncherHog Wild is the exclusive manufacturer and distributor of the AquaPod Bottle Launcher from Great American Projects Inc.

Hog Wild’s new AquaPod launches a two-liter soda bottle up to 100 feet. The bottle launcher comes fully assembled; all it needs is a two-liter soda bottle, an ordinary bike pump, and water. Fill the soda bottle halfway with clean water and affix over the launch tube. Take the bike pump and pressurize to 50 PSI. AquaPod includes a built-in-check valve that eliminates over-pressurization and ensures safety. Unwind the 15-foot long launch string and pull for a water-fueled blast off.

“Since 1996, we have created innovative toys and novelties geared to older kids and young adults,” says Joe Rooper, president of Hog Wild. “The AquaPod Bottle Launcher is the perfect addition to the Hog Wild line because it is so fun and unique.”

TIA to Host Programs and Events for Global Toy Fair Participants

TIAThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) has created programs and events for exhibitors, retailers, and members of the media for the North American International Toy Fair. The agenda is as follows:

International Visitor’s Welcome Reception on February 14, 6 to 7:30 p.m. The TIA will encourage registered international Toy Fair exhibitors, buyers, members of the media, and invited trade officials to meet and mingle.

U.S. Market Research Presentation on February 15, 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. International toy companies can receive help identifying potential expansion opportunities within the U.S. [Read more...]

The Ohio Art Company Announces New Leadership Team

Elena West

The Ohio Art Company has a new executive leadership team, with Elena West named as CEO and Martin Killgallon promoted to president. Current CEO Bill Killgallon and president Larry Killgallon will continue to be involved in various aspects of the business, including helping with the transition to the new executive leadership team, while also continuing to be active members of the board of directors. [Read more...]

Tickets Available for I Am Big Bird Screening During Toy Fair in NY

Feb4.BigBirdTickets are on sale for a special screening of the documentary I am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story, which is scheduled to take place at 8 p.m. on Monday, February 16 during the North American International Toy Fair in New York City. Tickets may be purchased online for $25, including general admission to the movie, popcorn, soda, and a commemorative gift; VIP tickets may be purchased for $125, including a pre-screening reception.

The feature-length documentary chronicles the life of Caroll Spinney, who has played Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street since 1969. The film contains footage of Spinney’s life and his collaboration with Jim Henson. The screening will take place at 8 p.m. at the AMC Theater on West 42 St., and there will be a Q&A session after the screening.

TIA Continues to Work with Officials to Alleviate West Coast Port Delays

Feb4.ILWUThe Toy Industry Association is continuing to work with industry stakeholders, port directors, and U.S. and international government officials on solutions to the ongoing congestion issues at the West Coast ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, Tacoma, and Seattle. [Read more...]

Target Announces Store Growth Plans for 2015

Target.TargetExpressThis year, Target Corp. will open 15 stores in three distinct formats: eight TargetExpress locations, one CityTarget, and six general merchandise stores. Target’s strategic growth is focused on reaching guests in urban centers, while also offering new experiences, merchandising layouts, and innovations in its general merchandise stores. [Read more...]