China Toy Fair


Propel Equity Partners Acquires Zoob

propel equityPropel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands, has acquired the Zoob construction toy line from Infinitoy Inc. Zoob joins the Poof-Alex Holdings LLC family of brands, which includes Slinky, Poof, Ideal, Scientific Explorer, Fundex Games, and Alex on the Propel Equity Partners roster of leading children’s brands.

Zoob is a building set featuring pieces that move after you put them together, allowing for interactive creations. The pieces are based on a natural and living system that includes five basic pieces that snap together in 20 different ways to make building easy and versatile. With more than 30 different themed sets, Zoob products are sold throughout the U.S. and in more than 100 countries through a variety of distribution channels.

Propel Equity Partners Acquires ALEX

Propel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing and creating value in consumer brands, has acquired ALEX, maker of children’s creative products.

ALEX joins the POOF-Slinky family of brands, which includes Slinky, POOF, Ideal, Scientific Explorer, and Fundex Games on the Propel Equity Partners roster of toy brands. POOF-Slinky Inc. was acquired by Propel Equity Partners in last July, and Fundex Games was acquired in December.

The combined strength of the two companies, along with an emphasis on customer-development and brand-building, will continue to fortify the brands’ presence. Broadened distribution and intensified consumer communications will drive availability of, and desire for, ALEX products among more households across the U.S. and worldwide. [Read more...]

Fort Bliss Military Families Receive Thousands of New Toys from Toy Industry Foundation

FortBliss1Nearly 3,000 children living with their families on military base Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas were treated to a special toy giveaway on April 17 hosted by the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and national partner Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services.

Families stationed at Fort Bliss, as well as resident members of the Air Force, Marines, National Reserves, and others, enjoyed a “Day of Play” that included bouncy houses and games, music and entertainment, and a pizza party.  Children of all ages received brand new toys, games, and stuffed animals donated by generous toy manufacturers. Gifts distributed at this event were generously donated by Alex, DuneCraft, Ganz, Gibout Toys, Hasbro, Lee Magic Pen, Lego, Look Out World, Mattel, MindWare, RBI Toys, Reeves International, Safari Ltd., and TMI Toy Marketing International.

The event was held as part of the joint TIF /BGCA Play Comforts program – the first-ever national toy distribution initiative to serve every branch of the U.S. military.  Through Play Comforts, toys and games donated by caring toy companies are delivered on an annual basis to families on dozens of U.S. military installations at home and abroad. Now in its fourth year of operation, the program has provided more than $3.5 million in toys for children of military families.


Toys Transform Toddlers into Little Learners

Courtesy of Toy Industry Association

Back-to-school season is just around the corner for millions of kids across the country … but there’s no need for younger siblings who are not yet in school to feel out of the learning loop. Thanks to toy innovation in the infant and pre-school categories, there are tons of great new playthings on the market that build cognitive and developmental skills at a young age.

“With increases in total U.S. births predicted for both 2012 and 2013, toymakers are rolling out a broad array of brand new toys and games to challenge and excite little ones, presenting them with more play options than ever before,” says Adrienne Appell, trend expert at the Toy Industry Association (TIA). “Toys can help transform tots and toddlers into lifelong learners by helping them explore their interests and talents very early on.”

[Read more...]

Alex to Premiere First App, Moody Monster Manor, on Friday

On March 25, Alex Toys will premiere its first app, Moody Monster Manor, targeted to kids ages 3 to 6. The free app for the iPhone, iPad, and iTouch features four monster-themed games and is a way for children to learn about emotions. Kids can create their own monsters, win monster merit badges, and learn about matching, colors, and animals, among other things. Activities include zapping Scared Sam’s bad dreams with a magical monster flashlight and whipping up a pot of Stinky Sneaker Stew for Hungry Hank.

The app will be available for download at www.alextoys.com and worldwide exclusively through the Apple App Store. On launch day, Alex’s website will also feature printable monster illustrations to color and a contest to win Alex monster-themed toys, including Diving Monster, Tub Target Screaming Monsters, Monster Bingo, Monster Clompers, and Monster Mitts.

The Toy Book’s Toy Report 11/24/09

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Catch up on last week’s news! Read The Toy Book Toy Report for 11/24/09.

To view click here.