January 25, 2013

Laser Pegs

International Toy Fair

Hasbro and The Tetris Co. Sign Licensing Deal

Jenga TetrisHasbro, Inc., and The Tetris Co. LLC have signed a licensing deal to bring the video game Tetris to face-to-face gaming. Through this agreement, Hasbro has obtained the license to manufacture and globally market multiple games based on the Tetris brand.
Hasbro will introduce two games in the fall, including the Bop It! Tetris game, which challenges players to match the traditional Tetris block-shaped lights. Also, Hasbro’s new Jenga Tetris game will combine the two stacking games, challenging players to push, pull, and stack the Tetris block shapes into a Jenga tower. The games will launch globally in August.

TIA Endorses New Organization for Young Professionals in the Toy Industry

Toy Industry Association (TIA) has endorsed the establishment of Toy Industry Next Generation (TING), a new organization created to support the growth, development, and retention of young professionals in the toy industry. TING will launch on a national scale with a networking event on February 11, in conjunction with New York Toy Fair.
As an organization, it will support young people in the toy industry—ages 35 and under—through professional development, networking, social opportunities, community service, and participation with charitable organizations. TING-sponsored events, forums, and educational seminars are intended to help its members build successful career tracks and foster a high level of personal investment within the toy industry early in their career.
Membership in TING is free and open to professionals who are employed by TIA members. Qualifying individuals from non-TIA member companies will be able to participate in certain TING-sponsored activities for a modest fee.
TING will make its debut during New York Toy Fair with a launch event on February 11 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at The Parlour in New York City. There will be a $25 (cash only) entrance fee for non-TIA members. Proceeds will be donated to the Toy Industry Foundation. For more information and to RSVP, email TING.Organization@gmail.com.

Round 2 to Offer Popular Mechanics Toys

Popular MechanicsThe Joester Loria Group has brokered a deal on behalf of Hearst publications with Round 2 LLC, for a line of Popular Mechanics scientific toys. Popular Mechanics has empowered its readers with the spirit of invention and power of knowledge. The brand will now capture young imaginations with a range of scientific toys. Products will include a build-your-own, battery-powered remote-control toy; solar- and dyno-powered toys; forensic kits; telescope and microscope sets; and weather observation kits. Round 2 LLC will also develop model kits, electric slot cars, and die-cast vehicles under the Popular Mechanics brand.

Reeves Appoints Omnigroupe as Canadian Distributor

Omnigroupe, a Canadian sales and marketing agency headquartered in Montreal, has been tapped by Reeves International to represent four of its toy lines to Canadian markets. The Reeves International lines include Breyer, Red Toolbox, Geomag, and Enchantmints.
Omnigroupe represents manufacturers and distributors of high-quality educational toys and collectibles that promote creative and interactive play. The Omnigroupe sales force is comprised of professionals with experience selling and marketing top brands to Canadian retailers in the toy and gift channels. Retailers are supported by Omnigroupe’s bilingual customer care team.

Engage Digital and kidSafe Seal Program Launch Digital Kids Safety Summit

Engage Digital is partnering with the kidSafe Seal Program to create the first Digital Kids Safety Summit taking place February 11 at the Javits Convention Center in New York City. The summit will be held one day before Engage Digital’s Digital Kids Conference. Both events are co-located with New York Toy Fair.
The Digital Kids Safety Summit provides a detailed understanding of safety and privacy issues for operators of kid-friendly virtual worlds, social networks, online games, mobile apps, and tablet devices. The summit will also discuss the latest developments on regulatory requirements and industry best practices. The summit will also discuss ways parents, educators, and caretakers can better keep children safe from online dangers and privacy risks.
For more information, visit www.digitalkidssafety.com.

PlayCon Scheduled for May 6 to 8          

PlayCon, the Toy Industry Association’s (TIA) International Conference of Play Professionals, has been scheduled for May 6 to 8 in Scottsdale, Ariz. Registration for the conference open February 25 on the TIA website.
PlayCon is an industry gathering that brings together top leaders, global intelligence, consumer insights, and countless networking opportunities in a resort environment.
This three-day conference features general assembly presentations by industry influencers and leaders, interactive workshops, networking lunches, evening events, and social activities.
For more information, or to obtain registration information, visit www.toyassociation.org.

Moose Toys Announces New Trash Pack Licensees
 
The Trash PackMoose Toys has signed new licensees for The Trash Pack in the amusement and vending category in the U.S and Canada. The new deals were brokered by The Licensing Shop, Inc.
The Toy Factory will produce amusement plush, pillows, rubber balls, and novelty hats. All Star Vending will produce vending machine stickers, temporary tattoos, toys, and novelties.
These licensees will join previously announced partners, including Activision (video games), Parragon Books Ltd. (publishing), Pressman Toys (games and puzzles), Candyrific (candy and chocolates), Accessory Innovations (bags, lunch bags, and luggage), Mad Engine (T-shirts), Rasta Imposta (Halloween costumes), Pioneer Balloons (balloons), Bulls I Toys (impulse novelty), SGI Apparel (sleepwear), and Xtreme Worldwide, Inc., (apparel).

Women In Toys Extends Application Deadline for Walmart Pitch Event

The application deadline for Women in Toys’ (WIT) and Walmart’s Women’s Global Economic Empowerment Initiative has been extended to January 30. About 40 women-owned businesses have already signed up to participate in the Walmart Pitch event on February 11 during New York Toy Fair, which allows WIT members to pitch their products to Walmart.
A discussion panel covering the “Top 5 Tips for Selling to Walmart, by Two Women Who Have Done It,” will be held February 11 from 12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m. in room 1C04 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Presenters include Carol Fenster of Baby Abuelita, and Amy Pennington, the president and founder of Paradise Kids. The discussion will be moderated by Patti Becker of Becker Associates LLC and Reisa Schwartzman of Griddly Games.
Those interested in being part of the Walmart Pitch should complete an application form from the WIT website (www.womenintoys.com) and submit it to Patti Becker at pbecker@beckerassoc.com with “Walmart Pitch” in the subject line.
Candidates will be notified if they are selected.
Those applying must also select three potential meeting times between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. on February 11. A legal agreement and product submission template must also be submitted. For a complete list of details and forms, visit www.womenintoys.com.

TIA

Bill Graham Joins Jazwares Team

Jazwares has appointed Bill Graham as vice president of marketing and product innovation. Graham will oversee all marketing activities for the company, including public relations, trade show management, and advertising. In addition, he will lead the charge on product innovation. Graham comes to Jazwares from Cartoon Network, where he worked for seven years and oversaw hard lines licensing. During his tenure at Cartoon Network, Graham worked on entertainment properties such as Adventure Time, Ben 10, Regular Show, and Adult Swim. Prior to his hard lines role, Graham managed soft lines licensing at Cartoon Network.

All Things Equal Appoints Director of Sales and Marketing

All Things Equal, maker of the Loaded Questions and Awkward Family Photos games, has appointed Sophia Georgeo as its new director of sales and marketing. Georgeo, whose previous experience includes managing all sales and helping grow brand awareness for Bananagrams, will be responsible for global sales efforts and social media marketing campaigns for All Things Equal.

Hasbro Announces Preliminary Results for the Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2012

Hasbro, Inc. has announced the preliminary full-year results for 2012. The company expects to report earnings per diluted share, excluding fourth quarter restructuring charges, in the range of $2.73 to $2.75. This includes an approximate $0.10 per diluted share negative impact from foreign exchange last year. Absent the unfavorable impact of foreign exchange, earnings per diluted share excluding fourth quarter restructuring charges are expected to be in the range of $2.83 to $2.85.
Final reported earnings for last year will reflect pre-tax restructuring charges of approximately $37 million recorded in the fourth quarter, or approximately $0.21 per diluted share, associated with the commencement of a cost savings initiative the company is implementing. Additionally, last year’s earnings include $11.1 million, or $0.06 per diluted share, of previously announced severance costs recorded in the first quarter. Reported earnings per diluted share are expected to be in the range of $2.52 to $2.54.
The company expects to report last year’s full-year revenues of approximately $4.09 billion, compared to $4.29 billion in 2011. Absent a $99 million negative impact from foreign exchange, full year 2012 revenues declined 2 percent. For the fourth quarter 2012, Hasbro anticipates revenues to be approximately $1.28 billion, including a negative $8 million impact from foreign exchange, compared to $1.33 billion in 2011.

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