Author: James Zahn

Funrise’s Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty Ready to Fly for Nick Debut

The new animated series Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty, created and produced by Funrise, will premiere Sunday, Jan. 27, at 11:30 a.m. (ET/PT) on Nickelodeon. The 26-episode series follows the comedic adventures of a spirited kitty named Felicity who possesses special transformative powers. Those powers spawn from her combined lineage, with the ability to lasso items in the form of a full-fledged rainbow, produce thunderous claps from her butterfly wings, fire lasers from her unicorn horn, and shoot glow sticks from her kitten paws. Together with her best friend Miguel, an energetic dog, she’s ready to take on every challenge that comes with living...

Read More

Shopko Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection

Wisconsin-based Shopko filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The regional retailer will begin closing 105 stores immediately (see the closing list here). The original Shopko store, opened in April 1962, is among the 16 locations closing in the retailer’s home state. The voluntary reorganization follows a revelation from McKesson Corp. in December that Shopko owes the pharmaceutical distributor more than $67 million in outstanding invoices. Toy industry effect is unknown as this time, but two toymakers made the list of the 30 largest unsecured creditors in the initial filing—Melissa & Doug ($787,00), and Hasbro ($708,000). Companies and individuals seeking more information or...

Read More

Pokémon Reveals Detective Pikachu Consumer Products

The Pokémon Co. International unveiled an extensive consumer products line inspired by the upcoming film, Pokémon Detective Pikachu. The new movie from Warner Bros. Pictures, Legendary Entertainment, and The Pokémon Co. arrives in theaters on May 10. The initial merchandise line for the film includes new Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) collections, Pokémon Center exclusives, action figures and plush from master toy licensee Wicked Cool Toys, and construction sets from Mattel’s Mega Construx. The Pokémon TCG line and select other merchandise inspired by Pokémon Detective Pikachu will be on display at The Pokémon Co. International booth (#3049) at the Toy Fair New York, taking...

Read More

Exclusive First Look: Puppy Dog Pals in the Windy City

The Toy Book has the exclusive first look at a special episode of Disney Junior‘s Puppy Dog Pals, “Windy City.” The preschool series highlights Chicago attractions in the new episode premiering Friday, Jan. 25 at 9:30 a.m. on Disney Channel. Pug puppies Bingo (Issac Ryan Brown) and Rolly (Sam Lavagnino) go on a mission to catch some wind when their owner Bob (series creator Harland Williams) has trouble testing his new kite invention. Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, Grace and Frankie) guest stars as the voice of Buddy the dog in a musical tribute to The Blues Brothers. Puppy Dog Pals...

Read More

Spielwarenmesse Celebrates 70th Anniversary with ToyFestival Party

The 70th anniversary edition of Spielwarenmesse toy fair will feature more than 2,900 toy, hobby, and leisure manufacturers from around the world. More than 71,000 toy buyers and exhibitors from more than 125 countries will attend from Jan. 30 to Feb. 3—and this year there’s a party. On Thursday evening, Spielwarenmesse will celebrate 70 years of toys in Hall 3C. Among the milestones being celebrated are the 21 companies that have exhibited at Spielwarenmesse every year since the beginning. The companies are: Peter Bausch, Beli-Beco, Gebr. Faller, Ferbedo, Haba – Habermaass, Heless, Teddy-Hermann, J. A. Huck, Käthe Kruse, Loquai-Holzkunst, Gebr. Märklin & Cie., Edwin...

Read More

Aurora World Plots a Green Evolution

Aurora World embarks upon its first major company-wide environmental effort this month. Following last year’s transition from plastic fill to 100 percent post-consumer fill (fibers made from recycled materials) for its Destination Nation line, Aurora World will adopt 100 percent post-consumer polyester for all its products. The change is effective this month. The company will also begin utilizing eco-friendly recycled biopolymer pellets in all of its products. The pellets are used to give plush toys weight and the best shelf appearance; alone, they account for over 3 million pounds of recycled plastics annually. Additionally, Aurora World will replace its current satin sewn-in...

Read More

New Leadership Moves at Precious Moments

The Precious Moments Family of Companies enters the new year with a shift in leadership. John Lanman, who has been a member of the Precious Moments Advisory Board for the past two years, will assume the role of chief executive officer. Former CEO Steve Kosmalski was appointed to the Board of Directors. Lanman was hand-picked by Kosmalski based on his previous experience at Oriental Trading Co., Block and Company, Inc., and Blyth, Inc. Lanman will use his experience in the gift and decor space to evolve Precious Moments to bring the core values of its brand into new product categories...

Read More

The Toy Association Fights Back Against Counterfeit Toys

The Toy Association‘s new white paper, The Real Threat of Fake Toys: The Increase of Knockoff and Counterfeit Toys Sold Online & How to Fight Back, identifies three main factors contributing to the upsurge in knock-off, counterfeit, and otherwise illicit toys being sold via online marketplaces. The rise of counterfeit and knockoff toys hit the mainstream last month when a child was injured playing with what was thought to be a popular magnetic toy. Instead, it was a cheap knockoff sold by a third-party vendor on a leading retail website. The toy may have looked authentic at a glance, but it...

Read More

The Simplay3 Co. Introduces Rock & Roll Teeter, Rock Around Wobble Disk

The Simplay3 Co. added two new products to its growing lineup of made-in-the-U.S. toys. The Rock & Roll Teeter and Rock Around Wobble Disk are both designed for indoor and outdoor active play, and require no assembly. Designed and manufactured in Ohio, the Teeter and Wobble Disk are designed for kids ages 2 to 5. The Rock & Roll Teeter is a seesaw with grip handles, two seats, and high backrests for active play indoors or outside. Kids can flip it over to crawl through the tunnel, or rock and balance with it using the item’s unique contours. It also...

Read More

The Spin Master Era of Monster Jam Begins

Spin Master began its foray into Monster Jam. First announced back in 2017, this year marks the official start of a 10-year licensing partnership with Feld Entertainment Inc. as Spin Master takes the wheel as the new master toy partner for Monster Jam. This season, driver Camden Murphy is taking control of the powerful Bakugan Dragonoid Monster Truck, which made its debut in the Stadium Championship Series this week. Murphy, the 2017 Monster Jam Rookie of the Year, is piloting the first Monster Jam vehicle to be directly inspired by an existing Spin Master franchise. Bakugan relaunched in December as part...

Read More

Latest Issue

Subscribe to Toy Report!