China Toy Fair


TIA Seeks Input from Members on Proposed Health Canada Lead Limits

tia_logo[1]Health Canada might expand its requirement limiting total lead content in toys sold or imported to Canada. Currently, the 90 parts-per-million (ppm) lead limit is applicable to toys produced for kids ages 3 and under. The expanded requirement would apply to toys produced for kids up to age 14.

The Toy Industry Association (TIA) has issued a short survey to learn how this potential requirement might impact the operations of TIA members. The survey asks if the proposed lead content limit would have no impact on companies, and why; would increase testing costs, and by how much on an annual basis; force them to stop selling toys in Canada; or reduce the number of toys sold in Canada.

The survey is available online. Responses are due by October 7. Any questions may be directed to TIA’s Rebecca Mond at (202) 459-0352.

TIA Hosts Fall Toy Preview Networking Philanthropy Events

tia_logo[1]With the Fall Toy Preview comes 750 long-lead buyers from around the world and 345 innovative toymakers all there to gain insight into emerging industry trends and of course be among the first to scoop up new product lines slated for release next year. The amount of business opportunity is a major draw, but the Toy Industry Association (TIA) is reminding all Fall Toy Preview attendees of networking and philanthropic events that will also be taking place the week of the show:

  • Opening Night Party: Benefiting the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF), Fall Toy Preview’s Opening Night Party will take place on October 1 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Dallas Market Center. Food and drink will be served at this annual event which gives buyers, exhibitors, and other trade show guests the opportunity to connect, network, and spend time with colleagues. Each exhibitor will receive two complimentary tickets to the party; additional tickets can be purchased on-site at the Fall Toy Preview registration desk (or during the show registration process). All proceeds benefit the philanthropic activities of the TIF.

  • Toy Industry Next Generation (TING) Cocktail Party:Immediately following the Opening Night Party, TING will hold a networking event from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Hilton Anatole Gossip Bar. The party is designed to foster relationships and business opportunities for young professionals working within the toy industry; the first-ever TING event was held at Toy Fair 2013. One complimentary drink per guest will be served; additional drinks and food will be available for purchase. Admission is free for TIA members. Guests may RSVP online.
  • Women in Toys (WIT) 4th Annual Breakfast of Champions
: WIT is hosting its 4th annual networking breakfast on October 2 from 7:30 to 9 a.m.  The breakfast will take place in Room D15 at the Market Center. Tickets can be purchased in advance online.

  • End-of-Show Toy Collection:TIF will once again hold its annual Toy Bank collection at the close of the show on October 3. The collected toys, games, and youth entertainment products will benefit Dallas-area children in need. Companies that would like to participate are encouraged to email TIF and state their interest in making a contribution. Volunteer staff will circulate the show floor on Thursday afternoon to collect the donated products. 

TIA’s Fall Toy Preview is an annual go-to-market event that attracts mass market retailers from around the world to preview the hottest toys and games slated for release in Q4 the following year. Fall Toy Preview 2013 will take place October 1 to 3 in Dallas.

Bipartisan Congressional Toy Caucus Launched on Capitol Hill

caucusAccording to the Toy Industry Association (TIA), a bipartisan Congressional Toy Caucus was formed and launched on Capitol Hill at TIA’s 6th Annual Washington, D.C. Fly-In. Co-chaired by Congressman Ron Kind and Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, the Toy Caucus was created to engage lawmakers in a constructive dialogue about issues currently facing the U.S. toy industry and the important role that toy businesses have in the development and education of children worldwide. Members of Congress who have toy companies in their districts and/or have an interest in the toy industry have been invited to participate in the Caucus.

Last year, the U.S. toy industry sold 3 billion toys and directly employs approximately 320,000 individuals with small businesses creating more than 30 percent of that number. Throughout the week, toy companies are meeting with federal policymakers to underscore the impact that their policy decisions have on real people and real companies.

TIA Opens Nominations for 2014 TOTY Awards, Board of Directors

toty14-logoThe Toy Industry Association Inc. (TIA) is accepting toy, game, and property submissions across 12 categories for the 2014 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards. The nomination period will close at 5 p.m. PST on October 11. Finalists will be unveiled on November 25; winners will be announced at the TOTY Awards ceremony in February 2014.

Toy companies, inventors, retailers, and others are invited to nominate contenders; all submissions should include a brief, 50-word description plus a statement—up to 300 words—explaining why the product or property is deserving of recognition on the TOTY Awards ballot. Products must have been introduced to the marketplace within the past two years and must be available at retail in the U.S. on or before November 25 of this year. Each submission is $75 for TIA members and $125 for non-members. For more information, visit the TOTY website or email toty@toyassociation.org.

TIA also invites all members to submit candidates for seats on its Board of Directors. The board is responsible for the management and control of the activities, property, and affairs of TIA, including the strategic direction of the association, the annual budget, and the scope of responsibilities of the board and its committees.

The criteria that will be considered by the nominating committee for each nominee includes commitment to attend regularly scheduled board meetings each year and, as appropriate, other relevant TIA-sponsored events; and professional skills and experience (e.g., finance, law, marketing, etc.) that may be of value to the board.

All nominations are due by 5:00 p.m. on October 11. More information, including criteria and where to submit nominations, can be found through TIA’s website.

Voting Opens for 2014 Toy Industry Hall of Fame Inductees

HallofFame2014logoThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) has opened its annual ballot to determine the next inductees into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame. The voting period will extend to September 13. This year’s candidates were chosen from a slate of 24 highly-qualified nominees submitted for consideration by members of the Hall of Fame (HOF) Committee. All of the nominees left notable marks on the North American toy industry.

Living candidates for induction into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame included:

  •     Jill Barad, former CEO, Mattel
  •     Horst Brandstätter, president and sole owner, PLAYMOBIL/geobra Brandstätter GmbH & Co. KG
  •     Thomas Chan, chairman and CEO, Playmates Toys Inc.
  •     Joel Glickman, founder, K’NEX Brands
  •     Bruce Raiffe, president, Gund, division of Enesco, LLC

Candidates for posthumous induction into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame included:

Responses are due by September 13. Designated points of contact at TIA member companies, former Hall of Fame inductees, and recent TIA Board members are invited to rank their choices in the living and posthumous categories.

The inductees will be honored during the Toy of the Year (TOTY) awards ceremony on February 15 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, which officially launches Toy Fair Week in New York City.

American International Toy Fair to Host Digital Kids Conference

digitalkidsThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) and media company Engage Digital have announced that the eighth annual Digital Kids Conference will co-locate with the American International Toy Fair in February at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

Taking place February 18 to 19, the Digital Kids Conference will address new strategies, tools, and marketplace insight that will enable youth-focused media professionals to create digital toys, games, and media services for kids. The partnership between the two shows will provide Toy Fair attendees with access to the Digital Kids Conference, and TIA members will receive reduced rates to attend the sessions. Digital Kids attendees will gain access to the Toy Fair show floor, where they will be among the first to view 150,000 new toys and games on display by more than 1,000 toy companies.

Toy Fair 2014 will be held from February 16 to 19. Toy Fair will showcase the year’s new products and also include an educational program designed to help toy inventors and designers, licensors, independent and specialty retailers, and many more constituents grow their businesses, comply with new safety requirements, identify the biggest toy trends of the year, and more.

Registration for TIA’s Sixth Annual Washington D.C. Fly-In is Open

DCFlyInLogoRepresentatives of small, mid-size, and large toy companies are invited to make their way to the nation’s capital for a line-up of events scheduled for this year’s Toy Industry Association, Inc.’s (TIA) Washington D.C. Fly-In, to be held on September 17 to 19. Each activity will showcase to federal policymakers the impact that the U.S. toy industry has on the economy, and the positive role that toys play in the development and well-being of American children.

A Congressional Toy Caucus will launch during the Fly-In. Its goal is to help advance the discussion of toy safety, the value of play, the growth of small toy businesses, the importance of creativity and innovation, and the increase of free trade opportunities in foreign markets.

According to TIA-commissioned reports, the total economic impact of the toy industry in the U.S. is $75.03 billion. From toy inventors and designers to store clerks in every state, the toy industry supports an estimated 321,030 jobs across the country—of those, just over 30 percent are employed by small businesses. Although the average unit price of a toy is less than $8, the industry generates roughly $22 billion annually in direct retail toy sales.

TIA will host a Congressional reception on Capitol Hill on September 18, and additional TIA-directed communications to members of Congress will raise toy industry awareness in D.C. A special Capitol Hill briefing on the world of toys and games will be held on September 19, and a print ad will be published in The Hill, a widely read political paper. Registration for the Fly-In is open.

DreamWorks Teams Up with Hasbro for Two Franchises

dreamworks_animation_logo_1Hasbro, Inc. and DreamWorks Animation have entered into an agreement to create toys and games inspired by DreamWorks Animation’s B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations and Trolls properties. Through this deal, Hasbro will unveil franchise-inspired product lines across major toy categories, with theatrical releases supporting B.O.O. and Trolls arriving in theaters in 2015 and 2016, respectively.Hasbro_logo_new 3.20.28 PM

B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations is the classified agency you’ve never heard of and certainly never seen. Dedicated to protecting the Universe from evil hauntings, the agents of B.O.O. have a secret weapon: they are ghosts themselves. When B.O.O. faces its biggest threat yet—an uber-villain with a ghastly plan—top agent Jackson Moss (Seth Rogen) and his wacky partner Watts (Melissa McCarthy) team up for the job.

DreamWorks Animation also recently announced the acquisition of the Trolls franchise. The Trolls experienced a resurgence in the 1990s, and in 2003, the Toy Industry Association named Trolls on its list of One Hundred of the Century’s Most Treasured Toys.

Horton’s Kids Receives ICTI Annual Award for Children’s Charities

ICTIDay2Press-9[1]Horton’s Kids, a local nonprofit dedicated to educating and empowering the children of Washington, D.C.,’s Ward 8, was presented with the global toy industry’s ICTI Annual Award for Children’s Charities during a ceremony this afternoon at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Established by ICTI in 2003, the annual award honors a nationally acclaimed, independent charity that has made significant contributions to the advancement of children’s health and wellbeing. The recipient is nominated by the toy association hosting that year’s ICTI annual general meeting and selected from among nonprofit organizations across the host country. [Read more...]

Toy Industry Hall of Fame Nominations Now Open

Members of the Toy Industry Association (TIA) and other toy industry stakeholders are invited to submit nominations of deserving candidates (living or deceased) for induction into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame, the TIA says in a news release. Selected candidates will join 62 current members of the hall of fame during a ceremony to be held in conjunction with the 14th annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards ceremony on February 15 of next year. The nomination period will extend from May 28 through June 28. Membership in TIA is not a prerequisite for submitting a nomination.

Nominees for the Toy Industry Hall of Fame should have longstanding experience in the toy industry; unimpeachable integrity and respect among his or her peers; have made outstanding contributions to the industry and/or to TIA; and be recognized for various accomplishments. Examples include innovative product or marketing introductions; manufacturing process changes, which significantly improved processes or products; a prominent role in promoting the public’s awareness and appreciation of the importance of toys in the lives of children, or promoting the public’s awareness of the toy industry as a significant and responsible member of the business community; and service on the TIA board of directors, or in other important capacities in or related to toys and youth entertainment.

Additional information on the Toy Industry Hall of Fame is available online. Questions and completed nomination forms should be directed to TIA’s Stacy Leistner (646) 520-4858 by June 28.