Glenn Abell, president and general manager of Moose Toys USA, talked to the Toy Book about the company’s best-performing categories, direct-to-consumer distribution, and more.
The Toy Book: What categories performed well for Moose Toys last year? How has the company kept up with retailer orders for your products?
Glenn Abell: Moose Toys is fortunate to have had strong brands across a variety of categories. We’re particularly proud of our preschool performance, having entered the category in 2019 with Kindi Kids, which was an instant success and continues to be one of our top performers this year, with the Kindi Kids Toddler Doll being the best-selling item for the year in the U.S. within the large dolls and accessories class for 2020, according to The NPD Group. We reinforced our strength in the category with Bluey, which launched last fall and is the No. 1 new preschool property as reported by The NPD Group.
Real Littles, an extension of our wildly successful Shopkins line, has been incredibly strong and showcases Moose’s continued strength in girls’ collectibles. And, of course, our marquee TOTY contender Squeakee the Balloon Dog was a standout success for Moose and was the No. 1 new item year-over-year in the youth electronics supercategory, according to The NPD Group.
Our boys’ lines Heroes of Goo Jit Zu and Treasure X continue to be solid contributors to Moose’s overall success. Both are becoming important evergreen brands affording plenty of creative expression for our designers, as well as potential future licensing opportunities. Since launching one and a half years ago, Heroes of Goo Jit Zu is a top five action figure item, breaking through the boys’ action aisle and continuing to grow season over season.
With five TOTY nominations in multiple categories, we’re so proud of the amazing toys our team consistently delivers. Our 2021 slate is really exciting, and we believe it will be our best line yet. We are extremely optimistic for the coming year.
Like many in the industry, we experienced strong demand for our products over last year, specifically in the second half. Our supply chain did an amazing job overcoming the unique and extraordinary challenges presented by the effect of COVID-19 to help us meet the continued demand within US retail and maintain our customer satisfaction.
TB: Has your direct-to-consumer distribution strategy changed as a result, and if so, how?
GA: Along with the necessity to be effective online for retail and manufacturing, direct to consumer is emerging as an extremely important channel for brands and manufacturers to control the marketing messaging, product proposition, and a one-to-one relationship with the shopper. With that, we’ve absolutely accelerated our own direct-to-consumer strategy as we believe it will be an extremely important touch point and commercial benefit to our future business.
This State of the Industry Q&A response was originally published in the February 2021 edition of the Toy Book. Click here to read the full issue!