NPD Group Sees Sales Increases in Video Game Hardware, Software, and Accessories

NPDGrouplogoIn his analysis for The NPD Group, Games Industry Analyst Liam Callahan reports that hardware, new physical software, and accessories experienced sales increases in February of this year with combined sales of $956 million, up 8 percent compared to last February.
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Disney Announces Sequel to Mega-Hit Frozen

FrozenFever1Earlier today, the Walt Disney Co. announced plans to make a sequel to 2013’s Disney Frozen at the company’s annual shareholders meeting in San Francisco.

Since its release in November 2013, Disney Frozen has made nearly $1.3 billion globally at the box office and won the Academy Award for best animated feature. The largest grossing animated film ever, Frozen also inspired a robust line of consumer products, and was the No. 1 best-selling toy brand among girls in 2014, according to the NPD Group.

Marvel Rolls Out Extensive Toy, Kids Product Program for Avengers: Age of Ultron, Spider-Man, and More

Marvel LogoOn Wednesday, Disney Consumer Products (DCP) revealed its 2015 plans for Marvel and its key franchises, including The Avengers and Spider-Man. This year will see the roll-out of one of DCP’s biggest licensing programs to date, which would revolve around Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, the launch of new animated content, and innovative marketing initiatives.
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Jazwares Receives Toys “R” Us Vendor of the Year Award for 2014

jazwaresJazwares has been named a recipient of the 2014 Toys “R” Us Vendor of the Year Award. Toys “R” Us distributes the annual award to business partners that have helped the retailer become a resource for kids, families, and fun. [Read more...]

Lego Builds Tenth Consecutive Year of U.S. Toy Market Growth

Lego LogoLego Systems Inc. achieved U.S. consumer sales growth for the tenth consecutive year in 2014. The company increased its overall U.S. toy market share to end 2014 in its strongest position ever in U.S. toys. [Read more...]

Moose Toys Unveils One-of-a-Kind Shopkins Character at Toy Fair

Shopkins,GemmaStoneTo celebrate the launch of Shopkins Season Three, Moose Toys will reveal a character made entirely out of crystal, Gemma Stone, at the upcoming North American International Toy Fair. Following its appearance, the crystal Shopkin will be auctioned off online later this year, with proceeds benefiting the Toy Industry Foundation. [Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Disney Frozen Poised to Dominate Again, or, We Welcome Our New Toy Overlords from Arendelle

FrozenFever2It’s the age of Frozen, and not just because of this freezing weather we’ve been having.

If you work in the toy industry, you’re probably familiar with Disney Frozen as a powerhouse license. According to data from The NPD Group, it was the top gainer among all toy properties last year, generating $531 million in toy sales across more than 39 categories. This is well and good for the toy companies fortunate enough to have partnered up with Team Elsa. On the flip side, if recent events are any indication, not having the license for Disney Frozen has the potential to be hazardous. [Read more...]

Average Time Spent Playing Games on Mobile Devices Increases 57 Percent Since 2012

NPDGrouplogoAccording to Mobile Gaming 2014, the latest report from The NPD Group, those who play on a smartphone, iPod touch, or tablet are playing more often and for longer periods of time than two years ago. In fact, the average time spent playing during a typical day has increased 57 percent, to more than two hours per day in 2014 versus one hour and 20 minutes in 2012. [Read more...]

Retail Toy Sales Up 4 Percent on Building Sets, Electronics, Frozen, Says NPD Group

NPDGrouplogoAccording to retail sales data from The NPD Group, U.S. retail sales of toys generated $18.08 billion last year compared to $17.46 billion in 2013, an increase of 4 percent.

Retail sales over the 2014 holiday shopping season got off to a bumpy start, with the weeks of Black Friday and Cyber Monday experiencing mixed results of -2 percent and 1 percent (compared to the same time periods in 2013). However, with one extra shopping day the week of Christmas compared to last year, Christmas week grew 27 percent, lifting December growth to 6 percent. Meanwhile, fourth quarter sales were up 3 percent for the 13 weeks starting October 5 through the week ending January 3. [Read more...]

TIA to Host Webinar on Technology’s Impact on Future Play Trends

Toy_Industry_Association_Inc_logoThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) will host a webinar, From PDA to Pandora: A Decade of Technology Disruption and How it Affects the Family, on December 10. The one-hour webinar will provide an overview of trends in consumer electronics ownership among families—and how technology is expected to impact future play trends.

Russ Crupnick, consultant at The NPD Group and managing partner of MusicWatch Inc., will present the webinar, which will be moderated by Anne McConnell, TIA director of market research and data strategy. Crupnick will highlight key trends from NPD’s Kids & CE reports from the last 10 years, as well as provide a recap of his presentation at PlayCon last spring, which addressed the impact of technology in the toy market.

Webinar participants will learn key trends in consumer electronics ownership and usage; what influences families to purchase tech devices for children, how the products are used, and how adoption varies by age and gender; how technology fragments toy and play customers and impacts different segments of the customer base; and how technology changes shopping and discovery habits—and how marketers need to adapt.

The webinar is free for TIA members and $49 for non-members. Registration is required. Questions from participants may be submitted in advance to TIA’s Jackie Retzer at jretzer@toyassociation.org, and answers will be folded into the presentation when possible. The session will be recorded and available post-event for those who are unable to participate live.