Author: Ali Mierzejewski

Talkin’ Toys: Meet Horizon Group USA’s New CEO

The Toy Book chats with Janet Hsu about her goals as she takes the helm of the company. Toy Book: What is your overall vision for Horizon Group as CEO? Janet Hsu: My vision is to infuse technology and invest in further innovation in order to transform the organization into one that is even more adaptive to ever-changing consumer needs; one that helps consumers embrace the complexities of the new world. I will also define a comprehensive roadmap to further establish Horizon Group as the No. 1 DIY, creative crafts, and STEM education powerhouse in the world. TB: What...

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Mattel Appoints Diana Ferguson to Its Board of Directors

Mattel Inc. appointed Diana S. Ferguson, CFO of Cleveland Avenue LLC, to its board of directors, effective July 21, 2020. Ferguson will serve on the board’s audit committee before assuming the role of that committee’s chair on Sept. 1.  “Diana is a highly experienced executive who brings a proven track record of corporate financial management and strategic planning to our Board,” says Ynon Kreiz, Mattel’s chairman and CEO. “We look forward to benefiting from her insights and perspectives as we continue to execute our strategy to transform Mattel into an IP-driven, high-performing toy company to drive growth and value...

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Mattel Announces Anthony P. DiSilvestro as New CFO

Mattel Inc. today announced that Anthony P. DiSilvestro will join the company as executive advisor on June 29, and will assume the role of CFO on the date following the filing of the company’s quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the second quarter this year (anticipated to be filed July 30, 2020). DiSilvestro will report to Ynon Kreiz, Mattel’s chairman and CEO, and will succeed Joseph J. Euteneuer, who is leaving the company as part of Mattel’s previously announced transition plan. DiSilvestro has nearly four decades of financial and leadership experience. He most recently was SVP and CFO of...

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Genius Brands’ ‘Stan Lee’s Superhero Kindergarten’ Will Premiere Next Spring on Amazon Prime

Stan Lee’s Superhero Kindergarten found its home in the U.S. for its premiere. Genius Brands International announced the spring 2021 premiere of its new kids’ animated series, Stan Lee’s Superhero Kindergarten, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, on Amazon Prime. Amazon Prime joins Alibaba Group, which will launch the series in China on its video streaming platform for kids, Youku. “Years ago, Stan Lee and I spoke of such a project, and I’m excited to finally bring great storytelling to kids around the world, which will also promote lessons of health, exercise, fitness, and anti-bullying,” Schwarzenegger commented in a press release. Stan Lee’s Superhero...

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Spin Master Launches ‘Sago Mini School’ App

While many parents are now becoming homeschool teachers unexpectedly due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, Spin Master is here to help make that transition a little bit easier. Spin Master launched Sago Mini School, a curiosity-led learning app for kids ages 3-5. From the creators of Sago Mini World, games that promote creativity and self-expression, Sago Mini School provides parents with a curriculum designed with child development and educational experts and teaches kids early literacy, math, spatial skills, and science through the power of play. There are more than 50 learning activities, each built to spark curiosity and keep...

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PlayMonster Looks Forward to Full 2020 Lineup

PlayMonster prides itself on being “Big on Fun” — and its 2020 lineup is no exception. The company will introduce a range of products this year, including new games, building sets, activities, and more.  In addition to Stacktapus, which is already available, PlayMonster will introduce a new line of games called Break In, one-time play experiential puzzle games that players ages 10 and up have to figure out how to break into places such as Alcatraz. Best of all, this line of games has players working cooperatively, so you can feel a sense of pride when your team succeeds...

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Genius Brands Expands Llama Llama Licensing Program

Genius Brands International Inc. will expand the retail program for its preschool brand Llama Llama, based on the bestselling book franchise by Anna Dewdney, with a lineup of new licensing partners for this year. The three new licensees on board for the Llama Llama retail program include Core Home for a range of hydration and feeding products; Everyday Kids for children’s bedding and home decor; and SPIRIT! for a book with plush set, which will be exclusively available at Five Below stores and online. Genius Brands’ previous lineup for Llama Llama includes plush toys from Kids Preferred available at,...

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Cobi Toys Launches Concorde Scale Model

Cobi Toys, maker of high-quality model kits, launched a new Concorde scale model. It is based on Concorde tail number G-BBDG, one of the original development aircraft, which is on display at Brooklands Museum in Surrey, England. Brooklands is the home of the former aircraft factory that played a key role in the development and production of Concorde, as well as the site of the world’s first purpose-built motor racing circuit. This 1:95 scale model contains 455 pieces is available now at specialist hobby and toy shops in Europe and North America, as well as online outlets including Amazon and...

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Hasbro Debuts NERF Fornite Blasters

Hasbro revealed the full line of officially licensed NERF Fortnite blasters and Super Soakers this morning. The line will hit shelves on Friday, March 22, but is available for preorder now on Hasbro Pulse. You can also preorder the line from other major retailers, including Walmart, Target, and Amazon, starting tonight at midnight. In addition, Hasbro will partner with U.S. esports team TSM to promote Hasbro’s new line of officially licensed NERF Fortnite blasters throughout 2019. The TSM organization has a massive fan base on social, reaching more than 72 million followers through its network of professional teams and gaming influencers on all social...

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Wicked Cool Toys Debuts Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins Line at Global Toy Fairs

Wicked Cool Toys (WCT) unveils its new Ninja product line at the 2019 International Toy Fairs in Hong Kong, London, Nuremberg, and New York. The company teamed up with Tyler “Ninja” Blevins — the No. 1 gaming influencer on YouTube, Instagram, and Streamer across all social media platforms, and named “The Biggest Gamer in the World,” by ESPN Magazine last September. WCT will be the master toy/collectible partner (ex-blasters) for Ninja, and will deliver an exciting line of play and display collectible figures and emotes, vinyl figures, plush toys, mystery boxes, role-play items, accessories, games, and vinyl augmented reality...

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