Sweet Suite 2016

Funko Launches Marvel Collector Corps, an Official Marvel Collectibles Subscription Service

MarvelAvengers,CollectorCorpsFunko has collaborated with Marvel on a new subscription box service, Marvel Collector Corps, featuring exclusive collectibles, apparel, and accessories from major events in the Marvel film and comic book universe. The debut box ships in April and will feature items from Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, including an exclusive 6-inch Iron Man Hulkbuster Pop! vinyl collectible. [Read more...]

GUEST OP-ED: Is That a Squirt Gun in Your Pocket, or Are You Just Displaying Your Deep Human Need to Play?

by Matthew Lawrence, strategist, Fresh Squeezed Ideas

FreshSqueezedPlay2As a 42-year-old dad to two young boys, I get excited when they ask for toys bearing the same franchises I loved as a child during the 70’s and 80’s (It seems to be superhero everything, these days!). Providing them these experiences reminds me that I still have some youthful zeal and enthusiasm, which is a great asset in my role as a cultural strategist who works day-to-day at loftier, more adult-natured stuff. But it also reminds me that they are able to enjoy the richest play experiences possible, through tried and true brands that have endured the test of time. [Read more...]

China Toy Expo Shows the Dynamism of the Toy Industry in China

Resized.EMILIALSINAby Emili Alsina

Over 50,000 professionals of the toy, baby, and licensing industries visited the trade shows organized by the China Toy & Juvenile Products Association (CTJPA) in Shanghai from October 14 to 16: China Toy Expo, China Kids Expo, and China Licensing Expo. This attendance represents a 26 percent increase compared to the previous year. Alsina, editor of the Spanish magazine Juguetes B2B (specializing in the toy industry in Spain) and member of the International Toy Magazine Association (ITMA), attended these three trade shows to witness the latest trends and developments of the industry in China.

The toy market is very dynamic in China, and has a consumer (the parents) increasingly interested in products that provide educational value to their children. The kids, in turn, are increasingly interested in licensed products. China Toy Fair, which has been held for the last 12 years–and is the largest international toy fair in mainland China and the third largest worldwide–was celebrated simultaneously with the China Kids Expo (childcare sector) and the China Licensing Expo (licensing sector).

Resized.LEGOJuguetes B2B, a professional communication magazine specializing in the toy industry in Spain, attended the three trade shows to give informational coverage of the latest trends in the industry that will shape the Chinese market next year. The strategy of holding the three exhibitions simultaneously makes perfect sense, given the synergies that occur between the three different sectors. For instance, the licensing business has a large influence in the toy industry, with licenses for baby care products as well. Therefore, celebrating the events at the same time is an interesting opportunity for the professionals. [Read more...]

Macy’s Holiday Arcade to Offer Toys from Build-A-Bear, Madame Alexander, Gund, and More

MacysLogoMacy’s will be introducing the Holiday Arcade, in-store gifting shops offering customers an eclectic assortment of distinctive and playful options for their holiday shopping lists. These shops will launch at six Macy’s locations between late October and mid-November:

The Holiday Arcade at five locations including Macy’s South Coast Plaza, Macy’s Union Square, Macy’s State Street, Macy’s Herald Square, and Macy’s Center City will be home to exclusive Build-A-Bear Workshop shop-in-shops. Visitors will have the opportunity to customize Build-A-Bear stuffed animals, as well as licensed products such as figures from Disney’s Frozen and Marvel’s superheroes. [Read more...]

Hasbro Franchise Brands Show Strength in Third Quarter

Hasbro logoToday, Hasbro Inc. reported financial results for the third quarter, in which net revenues increased 7 percent to $1.47 billion, compared to $1.37 billion last year. Foreign exchange had an unfavorable $10.8 million impact on third quarter revenues.

Reported net earnings for the third quarter were $180.5 million, or $1.40 per diluted share, compared to $126.6 million, or $0.96 per diluted share, last year. Adjusted net earnings for the third quarter were $187.8 million, or $1.46 per diluted share, excluding a pre-tax charge of $11.6 million, or $0.06 per diluted share, related to the restructuring of the company’s investment in the Hub Network joint venture. By comparison, adjusted net earnings for the third quarter last year were $172.5 million, or $1.31 per diluted share.

U.S. and Canada segment net revenues increased 4 percent to $764.3 million compared to $735.6 million last year. International segment net revenues increased 11 percent to $649.3 million compared to $582.7 million last year, reflecting 7 percent growth in Europe, 24 percent growth in Latin America, and 11 percent growth in the Asia Pacific region, as well as growth in the Boys, Girls, and Preschool categories. In total, Emerging Markets revenues increased 29 percent. [Read more...]

Worlds Collide as World Tech Meets the Marvel Universe

WorldTechToysWorld Tech Toys is teaming up with Marvel for R/C toys based on Avengers, the Amazing Spider-Man, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Avengers characters will include Iron Man, Captain America, and the Hulk, while the Guardians of the Galaxy lineup will feature Star-Lord, Groot, and Rocket Raccoon.

The company has also added Shark Week, and will introduce flying R/C robots based on National Football League (NFL) and National Basketball Association players. The NFL line-up will include Johnny Manziel and Peyton Manning.

Diamond Select Toys Has Talks, Giveaways Planned for New York Comic Con

DST.NYCCConcourseDiamond Select Toys (DST) will be participating in New York Comic Con with panels, signings, and more scheduled for all four days of the convention. Of the two panels DST will host, the first, Diamond Select Toys: The Best of All Worlds, will take place on October 9 at 5 p.m. in Room 1A18. DST president Chuck Terceira and sculptor Eli Livingston will talk about upcoming products, give away prizes, and announce a new toy line.

On October 11, at 4:15 p.m. in Room 1A24, Minimates product manager Robert Yee and designer Uriel Caton will join Terceira for Minimates MiniFigures: From Marvel to Clerks to TMNT! They will discuss upcoming Minimates releases, give away more prizes, and unveil the next Marvel Minimates assortment.

DST.MarvelPosterBefore and after the Minimates panel, Caton will sign full-size Minimates posters at booth 1736. Finally, every morning at the start of the show, DST will give out a free Ghostbusters promotional Minimate, while supplies last. A limited number will be given out each day, Thursday through Sunday. Throughout the weekend, DST will also give out free full-size posters featuring original Aliens, Ghostbusters, and Marvel Minimates artwork.

Hasbro and Disney Enter New Strategic Merchandising Relationship for Disney Princess and Frozen

DisneyPrincessesHasbro Inc. has entered a new strategic merchandising relationship with Disney Consumer Products for the Disney Princess and Frozen properties. The agreement gives Hasbro global rights, excluding Japan, to develop dolls based on Disney Princess stories and characters including Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and Frozen beginning in 2016.

“We are delighted to have been selected by Disney Consumer Products to develop dolls for the Disney Princess and Frozen franchises,” said Hasbro President & CEO Brian Goldner. “Our strategic thought leadership and innovation has led to the steady growth of our girls business over the past several years, demonstrating that we have a true understanding of girls globally and how today’s girls want to play. [Read more...]

Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes 2.0 Edition Launches in Retail Stores Nationwide

DisneyInfinity.MarvelSuperHeroesDisney Interactive and Marvel have launched Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes, the follow-up to last year’s toy/video game hybrid. The Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes Starter Pack features the 2.0 game software; the Disney Infinity 2.0 Base; Marvel’s The Avengers Play Set with Iron Man, Black Widow, and Thor figures; two Toy Box Game Discs; and a web code card. Marvel’s Spider-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy Play Sets, along with additional figures from those worlds, are sold separately. [Read more...]

Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes Gains Fan Favorites Yondu and Falcon

MarvelSuperHeroes.FalconDisney Interactive has added two more characters to its Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes line-up. There’s Yondu, from Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy movie, and Captain America’s loyal ally, Falcon.

The arrow-shooting leader of the outlaw band known as the Ravagers, Yondu will be playable in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Play Set, as well as in Toy Box 2.0. He will also make an appearance in the Marvel Team-Up: Yondu Power Disc.

Sam Wilson, codename Falcon, has been added to both Marvel’s Avengers Play Set and Toy Box 2.0. The character features EXO-7 wing pack and Hardlight Feathers, and other characters can also fly like Falcon when players use the Falcon’s Wings Power Disc.

Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes arrives at North American retail stores on September 23, and Yondu and Falcon will be available next year.