China Toy Fair


Roominate Creators Jump into the Shark Tank on September 26

by Alexis Willey

Roominate.logoThe founders of the toy line, Roominate, will pitch their science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM)-inspired product line on this Friday’s season premiere of ABC’s Shark Tank.

Roominate is a line of wired building systems designed for young girls to promote creativity while designing their own structures with circuits, modular pieces, and universal joints.

COMMENTARY: Animation Has Long Been a Promotional Vehicle for Toys

BrandonEngel1by Brandon Engel

You’ve likely heard about the massive success of The Lego Movie, and maybe you were even one of the millions worldwide who have gone to see it. Despite its financial success, some have blasted the film for essentially being a glorified, expensive commercial for Legos. I don’t think that anyone can deny that The Lego Movie is obviously commercially motivated, but does that make it wrong? Is it all that different from children’s movies selling toys based on the film?

BrandonEngel2Last Christmas, the Frozen Castle Playset and matching Barbie dolls from the Disney film Frozen were at the top of many children’s lists for Santa. Every time a commercial appeared for the movie or the toy, they advertised each other. Is The Lego Movie any different just because the toy existed before the movie? Here is the bigger question: In an age where almost no image is spared licensing of some form, where does the line get drawn between entertainment and commercial? [Read more...]

ABC and JPMA Will Not Merge, Collaborations Continue

All Baby and Child Corporation (ABC), creators of the ABC Kids Expo, and the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA), the industry trade association dedicated to the safe selection and use of juvenile products, will remain independent and will not merge. However, the two non-profit trade organizations will continue their collaborative relationship, which has strengthened over the past two years. As part of this evolving relationship, the two organizations will continue to evaluate the ever-changing needs of the juvenile industry and how to best support all industry stakeholders.

ABC remains committed to ongoing funding of key industry strategic initiatives at least through March 2015, including the enhancement of more frequent communications to all industry stakeholders to increase consumer confidence in the juvenile products industry. Since discussions began early last year, the formation of a vibrant specialty retail trade group, Brixy, was launched and continues to be funded by ABC.

Additionally, JPMA achieved an important industry goal by establishing an office in Washington, D.C. to increase the effectiveness of advocacy efforts at federal and state levels in the best interests of manufacturers, retailers, and consumers. Ongoing initiatives included in the funding agreement include increasing the scope and effectiveness of safety standards, the JPMA Certification Program, and the value of membership with JPMA.

JPMA and ABC have had a collaborative relationship for many years and will continue to work hand-in-hand on a number of different industry matters. While the merger discussions will not continue, the ongoing evolution of the working relationship will remain in order to best support the manufacturer and retail communities.

ABC Kids Expo’s 2013 Show Moves Back to Vegas

ABC Kids Expo will be moving its 2013 show back to Las Vegas after feedback from industry participants, announced All Baby & Child, Inc. (ABC), the parent company and organizer of the trade show. The location for the upcoming 10th Annual Expo, to be held October 14-17, 2012, will remain at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Most of the exhibit space for the 2012 show (75 percent) has been sold.

ABC says it is working closely with Louisville officials and suppliers to address concerns for the 2012 show. Concerns being discussed include improving healthy food options and reduction in wait times, reconstructing the expo center’s Wi-Fi system, and having more restaurant options in the city on Sunday.

For more information, or to register for the 2012 show, visit www.theabcshow.com.

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