China Toy Fair


Barnes & Noble Partners with Rovio for Exclusive Angry Birds Stella Preview

June4.ABStella-300x186 copyNook Media, a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble Inc., together with Rovio will make the upcoming Angry Birds Stella game available for fans to preview exclusively at Barnes & Noble stores from today to September 3. Angry Birds fans and Barnes & Noble customers can visit the Nook counter at any store nationwide to play the game on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook in-store demo devices.

Angry Birds Stella will launch on September 4 across all major platforms.

Barnes & Noble Celebrates Pop Culture in Stores This Summer

Barnes & Noble will bring pop culture favorite books, comics, superheroes, and television shows to life in stores nationwide from July 18 through August 10. The Get Pop Cultured with Barnes & Noble series of themed events will feature panel discussions, contests, exclusive content, giveaways and prizes, sneak peeks, activities, and more featuring popular characters, DVDs, artists, illustrators, and pop culture icons.

The campaign will highlight the influence that books, graphic novels, movies, TV shows, music, toys, games, and collectibles have on culture. Get Pop Cultured with Barnes & Noble will kick off with a preview weekend and costume contest from July 18 to 20. All Barnes & Noble stores will have limited quantities of free, never-before-seen samplers of upcoming releases, posters, and digital downloads during Preview Weekend. Other events include Batman Day on July 23, where all Barnes & Noble stores nationwide will sell exclusive merchandise; the DC Comics Spectacular from July 23 to July 27, which will offer fans a chance to celebrate DC Comics with activities, special giveaways, and a limited time offer on graphic novels; a sing-along and story time event, Frozen Friday: Cool Off with Olaf! on August 1; Marvel Day on August 2, which will feature Marvel Comics-themed activities, giveaways, and product offerings; and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Jr. Ninja Training Academy Event, which will include activities, crafts, and a Ninja training event.

There will also be special guests such as Grumpy Cat, Christopher Paolini, and various authors.

Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Toy Line to Expand

DanielTigerThe Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood product line will include more products and enter major retail chains this year. Jakks Pacific will expand the brand’s range of toys, as well as venture into new categories including books and costumes, the latter through its Disguise division. In addition, University Games will offer puzzles and games such as the Colorform Deluxe Playset.

The new toys and games are part of an overall retail expansion, which includes Kmart and Target introducing a selection of licensed merchandise, and Barnes & Noble launching a full line of books from Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing under Simon Spotlight. Daniel Tiger Neighborhood products will also be introduced to Canadian retailers for the first time.

TIF Distributes New Toys to More than 2,000 Kids on North Carolina Air Force Base

TIF/BGCAThe Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and national partner Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services distributed brand new toys to more than 2,000 children and families living on Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C. on December 2. During the base’s annual tree lighting ceremony, kids were treated to more than just entertainment and festive activities—they were also given a generous donation of toys, games, and stuffed animals.

With the holiday season just around the corner, TIF and BGCA are hopeful that the toys will ease the stresses and challenges children face with parents who are frequently deployed. This special donation was made possible through toy companies to TIF’s signature giving program, The Toy Bank.

This event was held as part of the TIF/BGCA Play Comforts program—the first national toy distribution initiative to serve dozens of U.S. military installations at home and abroad. The program has provided more than $3.8 million in toys for children and families over the four years it has been running.

TIF’s Toy Bank includes AbraKIDabra, Alex Toys, Barnes & Noble, Cardinal Industries, Cartamundi USA, Hohner, Inc., Green Toys, Innovation First, Lego Systems Inc., Mattel Inc., MindWare, Ohio Art, Patch Products, Safari Ltd., Wonder Forge, Wyla/Just Pretend Kids, and exhibitors at the TIA’s Fall Toy Preview in Dallas. For 10 years, The Toy Bank has provided toys to more than 11 million children in need worldwide.

Joester Loria Group Brokers Deals for The World of Eric Carle

The World of Eric Carle has renewed its license with master toy partner Kids Preferred for an additional four years in a deal brokered by The Joester Loria Group.

Kids Preferred has been a partner for more than 7 years with successful programs consisting of plush, plastic, and wood developmental toys in retail accounts including Babies “R” Us, Buy Buy Baby, Kohl’s, Sears, and Barnes & Noble. Kids Preferred continues to develop a wide range of innovative toys that encourage early developmental skills and playful learning for infants and toddlers. New introductions and expanded retail programs this year will include the following Target, Kohl’s, and Babies “R” Us. [Read more...]

Children’s Recording Artist Laurie Berkner Debuts Sing and Send Karaoke App

Laurie Berkner has released her first-ever Sing and Send karaoke app with the help of Two Tomatoes Records and Siena Entertainment. The app debuted at No. 1 on iTunes’ Kids Music apps chart. Kids can sing and share their favorite Laurie Berkner Band songs on iPhone, iPod, and iPad. The app comes pre-loaded with three songs, and more song packs are available for purchase. [Read more...]

Imagination To Release Fifty Shades of Grey Party Games

Imagination Games will release Fifty Shades of Grey: Party Game, a new party game  that allows all players to “Release their Inner Goddess!” This is the first in a series of fun, social party games that will be available in the U.S. and Canada, United Kingdom, and Australia on December 10. The game will be released internationally in time for Valentine’s Day. [Read more...]

Pressman Toy Offers Fun Way to Foster Skill Development with Help from a Classic Game

As part of a larger 2012 Mastermind education initiative, Pressman Toy has announced that teachers and homeschoolers may sign up on their website to receive one of 10,000 free Mastermind board games for their classroom or home. In less than one week’s time, more than 10,000 educators registered for a Mastermind game.

Mastermind is a two-player game that puts the Codemaker against the Codebreaker. The Codemaker secretly places any four Code Pegs in the shielded code area. The Codebreaker puts down a line of color pegs and tries to uncover the secret code. This thought-provoking game fosters development of important skills, including logic, reasoning, deduction, patience, and visual perception.

Along with the Mastermind giveaway, Pressman Toy is also hosting the first Mastermind Braintwister Challenge. From now until December 31, kids ages 7 through 12 can enter their own braintwisters in categories such as puzzles, word problems, riddles, and games with solutions. Two first-place winners will each receive a $1,000 scholarship and a trip to attend the celebration event.  Each of the two first-place winners will also have the opportunity to nominate their most inspirational instructor to receive a $250 award each.  Three other students will have the opportunity to win $100 each. For more information, visit www.MASTERMIND-education.com.

Pressman Toy games, including Mastermind, are available for purchase at Toys “R” Us, Barnes & Noble, and Marbles stores nationwide, as well as online at Amazon.com, Target.com, and PressmanToy.com.

SMC Entertainment Group, Inc. Signs New Licensees For The Jungle Book

SMC Entertainment Group, Inc., an entertainment and brand management company and sister company to global consumer products manufacturer Sun-Mate Corporation, has finalized licensing agreements in the U.S. for the new high-definition television series, The Jungle Book, scheduled to debut on June 11 on Disney XD.

SMC has signed a slate of new U.S. licensees, including Phase 4 Films as the property’s home entertainment and Digital distribution partner; Isaac Morris as its master apparel partner; Komar for children’s sleepwear; Insights Editions for Young Readers Book series; Seasons USA for Halloween costumes; Nanco-Nancy Sales, Inc., for amusement plush and novelties; Pacific Play Tents for children’s play tents; Barnes & Noble for e-books; United States Playing Card Company for customized playing cards; and My Idol Pops for figural lollypops.

SMC acquired all North American Home Entertainment, Licensing and Merchandising rights, and Promotional rights for The Jungle Book CGI-animated television series, plus the one-hour tele-film from DQEI, the producers and rights holders of the series. SMC has also acquired The Jungle Book toy rights for Benelux, Australia, and New Zealand, along with licensing and merchandising rights for South Africa. SMC will be representing The Jungle Book at Licensing Show, at booth 3268, and is seeking partnerships to develop a comprehensive consumer products’ campaign across categories including toy, ELA’s, publishing, games and puzzles, gaming/interactive, apparel, footwear, accessories, back to school, party goods, food and beverage, arts and crafts, home furnishings, and more.

This post was originally written by Sierra McCleary-Harris and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.