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Hexbug Partners for Nitro Circus Stunt Toys

Fans can re-create the action of Nitro Circus Live Shows with Hexbug's Nitro Circus air bound stunt toys and app. The line is available now at Target stores and online, and is coming soon to Toys "R" Us retailers throughout North America.
Three ramp sets are available—the Nitro Circus Freestyle Ramp, Giganta Ramp, and Capture It! Set—each featuring characters equipped with Nitro Circus' trademark outrageous contraptions. Kids can take the action further using the Hexbug Nitro Circus Augmented Reality app to capture jumps and tricks, and add special effects to their stunts.
The release is the first initial step of a licensing partnership between Hexbug and Nitro Circus, as the action sports entertainment brand continues to expand its consumer products business worldwide.

Mattel Debuts New Adult Game with Amazon Echo

Mattel will launch a new adult strategy game, Escape Room in a Box: The Werewolf Experiment at Gen Con 2017. Last year, 13.4 million people participated in Escape Rooms, which inspired this game that gives players one hour to solve puzzles, crack codes, and find hidden clues.
The game will challenge players to solve physical and mental puzzles to unlock clues to free themselves before time runs out. Once players open the game they have been exposed to a virus that will turn them into werewolves. Players are given one-hour to solve 19 puzzles and find the codes to open three-locks to ultimately escape the virus, and the room.
To enhance gameplay, players can connect to the Amazon Alexa to keep track of time, ask questions, and play a special soundtrack. The game will be available in November.

The LEGO Group Reveals Global Licensing and Merchandising Program for The LEGO Ninjago Movie

The LEGO Group and Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP) revealed the licensing and merchandising program for The LEGO Ninjago Movie, including apparel, accessories, costumes, toys, publishing, stationery, party goods, and more.
LEGO will launch more than 15 original construction sets inspired by the movie to let fans recreate scenes from the film, including the Spinjitzu Training Dojo, Ninjago City Chase, Master Falls, Manta Ray Bomber, “Garmadon, Garmadon, GARMADON!,” and the intricate Ninjago City. Fans can also add to their Ninjago adventures with additional building sets that will feature such fun new collectibles as the Water Strider, Jelly Sub, Green Ninja Mech Dragon, Lightning Jet, Garma Mecha Man, Fire Mech, Ice Tank, Temple of the Ultimate Ultimate Weapon, and Destiny’s Bounty.

Step2, McLaren Automotive Partner for Open-Top Toy Car

The Step2 Company LLC teamed up with McLaren Automotive to create a new model toy car tailored to appeal to a new audience.
Inspired by McLaren's 570S Spider, the McLaren 570S Step2 Push Sports Car lets parents push the car like a conventional stroller; features a storage area under the seat; and has Step2's Whisper Wheels to give the car a smooth ride.
The officially licensed McLaren 570S Step2 Push Sports Car initially launches in Ventura Orange and will be available exclusively through Amazon in September before rolling out later this year at major global retailers and

Moose Toys Launches Shopkins Cutie Cars

Moose Toys launched Shopkins Cutie Cars at retail, introducing die-cast vehicles packed with classic Shopkins personality.
These collectible cars, featuring names such as Choc Chip Racer, Wheely Wishes, and Motor Melon, are made with real die-cast metal, giving them a weight like classic collectible cars. There are more than 35 vehicles to collect, and animated content was developed to support the brand. Click here to watch the video.

Tabletop Gaming Subscription Service QST Launches on Kickstarter

Gaming industry veteran Cory Jones launched a tabletop gaming subscription service, QST, on Kickstarter. Pronounced "Quest," the service offers a small form factor tabletop game directly to subscribers each month. Read more…

Registration Deadline Extended for WIT's Empowerment Day

The registration deadline for Women In Toys, Licensing, and Entertainment's (WIT) Empowerment Day has been extended to August 31. The event will take place on Monday, Oct. 2, the day before Fall Toy Preview begins in Dallas.
Attendees will have the opportunity to pitch to Walmart, participate in speed mentoring Info Sessions, and more. The event is free for WIT members. Click here to register.

ASTRA to Offer Workshop on Play and Child Development

The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) will offer a two-day, in-person, hands-on workshop in September as part of its Certified Play Expert program, a professional education initiative to help toy industry retailers, sales representatives, and manufacturers strengthen their businesses by increasing their knowledge about play and child development.
The two-day workshop will be held in Chicago September 14 and 15. Participants will get research-based instruction in several core areas, including theories of child development, characteristics of major developmental stages, types of play and their benefits, advocating for play, and making sense of play. Information about the program, how to register, and deadlines for participation is available here.

Registration Opening Soon for Spielwarenmesse's ToyAwards

Companies exhibiting at Spielwarenmesse can submit their products on Sept. 1 for a chance to be nominated for a ToyAward. Exhibitors can register up to three products in four age-specific categories of Baby & Infant (0-3 years), Preschool (3-6 years), School Kids (6-10 years), and Teenager & Adults (10+ years).
A jury of toy experts such as sales agents, educators, market researchers, and a toy safety expert will choose three products as finalists in each of the four categories. The entries will be judged based on fun factor, originality, safety, potential at retail, workmanship & quality, and accessibility of the product concept. The 12 nominees will be announced on Jan. 25, and the Awards will be presented during Spielwarenmesse's Opening Ceremony on Jan. 30.
Registration is open until Dec. 22 free of charge. Click here to register!

Zimpli Kids Secures DC Comics License

Zimpli Kids is expanding its line of Gelli Baff and Slime Baff with DC licensed products later this year. The line will include Superman Blue Slime Baff; Wonder Woman Glittery Pink Gelli Baff; and new exclusive Slime Baff colors Batman Black Slime Baff and Joker Putrid Purple Slime Baff.

Spinballs Changes Name to Fun in Motion Toys

Spinballs LLC will now be doing business as Fun in Motion Toys on the heels of its newest product launch, mozi. Under its new name, the company will release additional products with a "fun in motion" theme.
The company was founded in 2010 and introduced to brick-and-mortar stores in 2015 with its flagship item, Spinballs LED Poi. The launch of the company's second item, mozi, sparked the name change.
Fun In Motion's products can be found in more than 600 independent and specialty toy stores nationwide and on its website.

TOMY International Taps Vincent D'Alleva as Chief Brand Officer

TOMY 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.

Filip Francke Joins Ravensburger North America as CEO

Filip Francke will join Ravensburger AG’s executive management team as CEO of its recently established North America division. Ravensburger North America brings together three toy brands—Ravensburger, Wonder Forge, and BRIO—under one roof. Read more…

August 17, 2017
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