Archive | Toys/Games

Fun and Games

A wide range of video game properties have found their way into the world of physical board, miniatures, and card games in the past six months. Some examples: Konami Cross Media NY just announced that its recently relaunched Bomberman and Contra titles would be turned into board and card games, respectively. IDW holds the rights […]

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Snap, Crackle, and Pop! (Vinyl)

Over the past year and a half, collectibles brands have been entering the breakfast cereal market. The products are intended to taste good, but also to serve as a collectible in their own right. They are often sold through retail outlets that focus on collectibles and other non-food products, rather than in supermarkets. Three notable […]

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Compound Interest

Two of the top-of-mind trends in the toy industry over the past two years have been mini collectible figures, especially in blind boxes, and compounds in the form of slime, sand, dirt, and ooze. More recently, those two trends have come together, as low-priced, collectible minis are not just packed in blind boxes but encased […]

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Toy Testers Give Rave Reviews to Licensing

Kid influencers specializing in toy and children’s product reviews and unboxings via their own YouTube channels and other social media platforms have gained significant followings, with the top examples generating more than 10 billion views and amassing more than 10 million channel subscribers. Some “best of” lists name more than 100 different personalities playing in […]

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Financial Filings Shed Light on Toy Trends

As of early March, most of the major public toy companies have released their financial results for fiscal 2018. Here are some of the topline insights from each as they relate to licensing: Hasbro. Outbound entertainment and licensing revenues for the company’s proprietary brands increased 5%, attributable mostly to a digital streaming deal for Hasbro […]

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Magical Mash-Ups

Ultra-cute, ultra-positive, and often-magical characters and images have permeated the toy industry and other categories of late and continue to represent a strong trend. Examples include unicorns in particular, as well as mermaids, rainbows, kittens, and the like. A newer, but already ubiquitous development consists of hybrids of some or all of the above, with […]

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Child’s Play in China

The escalating trade war with China is creating uncertainty for the global toy industry, with tariffs on toys, if they are implemented, potentially affecting the profitability of manufactured-in-China playthings in the U.S. market. But that isn’t stopping Western entertainment and toy companies from continuing to make inroads into the Chinese market by forging distribution, co-production, […]

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Toy Story

As we approach the all-important fourth-quarter selling season for toys, it seems like a good time to take a look at what has been happening in the industry since Toys ‘R’ Us closed the last of its U.S. stores in June of this year, after declaring bankruptcy in September 2017: Other retailers are trying to […]

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Revitalizing Retro Toys

The trend of reviving dormant or underexploited brands whose heyday is long past—a phenomenon across many consumer products categories these days—has been hitting the toy industry this summer, with the owners of three retro brands from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, respectively, announcing comebacks. Mego is relaunching its pioneering 1970s action figure line under the […]

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