Author: James Zahn

Trade War: The Looming Threat of Tariffs on Toys is Anything But Child’s Play

This is an updated version of an article that originally appeared in the May/June 2019 issue of the Toy Book… If no news is good news, then the few months following Toy Fair were decent — if not filled with a welcome, yet somewhat uncomfortable silence regarding trade talks between the U.S. and China. Following last year’s move to impose a 10% tariff on $200 billion in Chinese imports, companies and consumers were left hanging with the possibility of further tariffs looming on the horizon. That was, of course, until May 10, when President Donald Trump instructed officials to...

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Tru Kids Brands Partners with Hobby Warehouse for Australian Toys “R” Us Relaunch

Toys “R” Us is headed back to Australia. Tru Kids Brands, the New Jersey-based parent company of  Toys “R” Us, Babies “R” Us, Geoffrey the Giraffe, and more than 20 in-house consumer toy and baby brands, entered into a licensing agreement with Hobby Warehouse to operate Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us in Australia and New Zealand. The brands will relaunch on June 12, with a countdown clock ticking down on the official Toys “R” Us Australia website, and a teaser commercial announcing the comeback released this evening. Under the new license agreement, Hobby Warehouse will place an immediate focus...

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The Wiggles Ink New Licensing Deals for 2019 and Beyond

The Wiggles revealed several new licensing partnerships as Licensing Expo is now underway. The current resurgence of The Wiggles in North America will be supported by a host of new products that will begin hitting retail this fall, just as the group wraps its largest U.S. tour in nearly a decade, and heads north into Canada for a 26-city run. Among the new licensees, Black and White, joins The Wiggles as footwear partner, with new products set to include Wiggles toddler slippers. The Kersheh Group‘s Jelli Fish Kids is a new apparel partner focused on underwear and sleepwear.  The underwear will hit...

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Zoonicorn Trots Into Licensing Expo with New Music Videos and Distribution Channels

Zoonicorn debuted three new animated music videos for kids ages 2 to 6 this week. From creator Mark Lubratt, Zoonicorns help young animals solve real life challenges through musical adventures in the dreamland Zooniverse. The new clips will be available on YouTube and HappyKidsTV, as well as new distributors, Kabillion, Kid Genius and Kidoodle.tv. “As our distribution partners grow, we are able to engage more kids with the charming characters and appealing stories,” says Lubratt. “Our goal is to grow our Zooniverse of stories to reach a broader audience, filling the social-emotional development media gap to help kids gain the coping...

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