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April 2012 | Vol. XI - No. 4
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April 2012 | Vol. XI - No. 4
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Toys in the News: 4-30-12


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See previous toy industry news.


Toys in the News is updated Mon-Fri at 9:15 am PST

mr potato commericalsIs Mr Potato Head to blame for 'pester power' ads? April 30, 2012 — It is 60 years since Mr Potato Head starred in the world's first television toy advert...

Mattel's San Diego Comic Con 2012 Exclusive Preview. April 30, 2012 — Here’s your first official look at the products we’re planning to have...

Why has Hollywood gone toy crazy? April 30, 2012
— Battleship launched a broadside at the UK box office last week, cruising to an impressive £3.8m haul...

'Rayman Legends' leaked trailer shows Wii U toy functionality. April 30, 2012
— The video reveals how Near Field Technology works for Nintendo's new console...

Pressman Toy is Game for Big Nate. April 30, 2012 — HarperCollins Children’s Books and Pressman Toy have teamed up to create games and puzzles...

Jakks Pacific Seen Raising Bid in Buyback-Poison Pill: Real M&A. April 27, 2012 — Jakks Pacific Inc. (JAKK), the maker of Disney Fairies dolls and Pokemon cards...

barbie whale trainer sea world mattel petaPETA's Latest Target: Barbie. April 27, 2012 — PETA Says Mattel's New Whale Trainer Barbie Is "Barbaric"...

Children's Books Shine at the 17th Annual L.A. Times Festival of Books. April 27, 2012 — More than 100,000 people, many of them families with kids, turned out...

Cubism? Rubik helps with toy's anniversary exhibit. April 27, 2012 — It's a puzzle, a metaphor and a hit toy — and in a couple of years...

Toddlers Prefer Live Animals to Toys: Research. April 27, 2012 — Young children prefer live animals to playing with toys as a study...

Fathers 'just as likely to suffer postnatal depression'. April 27, 2012 — The study, published in Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, found 9.7 per cent of fathers...

Sales surge, profits decline as Amazon.com funds growth in Q1. April 27, 2012
— First quarter sales at Amazon.com surged 34% to $13.2 billion during...

Many Of The Bribery Allegations Against Wal-Mart May Not Be Illegal. April 27, 2012 — The New York Times’ article detailing a “vast Mexico bribery case hushed...

Table Hockey, on Ice Since Heyday in 1970s, Makes a Comeback. April 27, 2012
— Carter Campbell leaned over the stick-figure hockey players, loosening up his wrists...

ice age continental drift video game activision wiiCharities "Thrilled" by Donations from Hape, Safari, Schoenhut and Magicforest. April 26, 2012 — Yesterday at 2:00 pm, the front of The Doll House & Toy Store in Scottsdale, Arizona was piled high with boxes of incredible, high-quality specialty toys and children's instruments. That may not be unusual for a toy store, but theses toys were donated by Schoenhut Piano Company, Hape International, Safari Ltd., and Magicforest Ltd. and were being given away to two local children's charities: Devereaux House and The Crisis Center, as part of TDmonthly's "2012: A Year of Charity" giveaway event. See full coverage in next month's issue of TDmonthly. Retailers: More chances to give away toys are coming soon!

Activision Readies New Ice Age Game. April 26, 2012
— In anticipation of the upcoming release of Ice Age: Continental Drift...

MGA's Bratz Dolls One-Up Barbie On Going Bald. April 26, 2012 — There’s a difference between a true investment and a half-hearted effort...

Toys of summer are hot, but mixed forecast for rest of the year. April 26, 2012 — At the Time to Play spring showcase Wednesday, an annual gathering of toy manufacturers...

Tucson toy company hopes to 'reshore'. April 26, 2012 — The "Made in China" label is all over the place. It's on our clothes...

Temple Run To Hit Mass Retail Market With Spin Master Games Partnership. April 26, 2012 — Imangi Studios creation Temple Run has been a big name within the vast community...

Online disadvantage is $23 billion and expanding. April 26, 2012 — Following up on last week’s commentary (A dot com disconnect and Canadian...

Target Recalls Bunny Sippy Cups Due to Injury Hazard. April 26, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: Approximately 264,000 Target Home Bunny Sippy Cups from Target, sold exclusively at Target stores nationwide from February 2012 through April 5, 2012 for $3. The ear on the bunny sippy cup can poke a child in the eye area while using the cup for drinking, posing an injury hazard. Target has received six reports of incidents where the plastic ear poked children during routine use of the product. Cuts and bruises were reported in three of these reports. Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled sippy cups and return them to any Target store for a full refund.

manhattan toy whoozit rattle recall cpscManhattan Group Recalls Baby Rattles Due to Choking Hazard. April 26, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Health Canada, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 3,000 in the United States and 150 in Canada Whoozit® Starry Time Rattles from Manhattan Group LLC, sold at specialty toy and baby stores nationwide, in Canada, and online at www.manhattantoy.com from September 2011 through March 2012 for about $15. The clear spheres on each end of the rattle can break, releasing small parts, posing a choking hazard to small children. Manhattan Group has received two reports of rattles breaking. No injuries have been reported. Consumers should immediately take these rattles away from young children and return it to the store where purchased for a full refund.

Walmart gets super hero treatment with The Avengers. April 26, 2012 — Walmart is giving fans of Marvel's "The Avengers" exclusive access to the...

GeekDad’s Exclusive Lego Batman 2 Villain Reveals. April 26, 2012
— You won’t see these baddies anywhere else, pretty much in the universe...

Action Videogames Change Brains, Improve Visual Attention. April 26, 2012
— A team led by psychology professor Ian Spence at the University of Toronto...

Hasbro Tricks Fan Into Disclosing Address to Uncover Leaked Nerf Gun. April 26, 2012 — Australian Martyn Yang is a big fan of Nerf guns. Like any big fan...

First Annual A World In Motion® International Motorized Toy Car Competition Winners Announced. April 26, 2012 — SAE International hosted the first-ever A World In Motion® (AWIM) International Motorized Toy Car Competition on Tuesday, April 24, in Detroit, MI...

Duncan® Toys Announces Release of Pro Z™ Yo-Yo with Patent Pending MOD Spacers. April 25, 2012 — Duncan introduces the Pro Z™ Yo-Yo with MOD Spacers™. A new addition to Duncan’s Hardcore Series™ of yo-yos, Pro Z features patent pending shape-changing spacers that allow the shape to be modified, converting it from a standard looping style yo-yo to a wide-body string-trick yo-yo...

ONE DIRECTION hasbro boy bandHasbro Teams Up with Global Pop Phenomenon One Direction to Debut Toy and Game Collection. April 25, 2012 — Hasbro, Inc. HAS +0.68% announced today it has entered into agreement with worldwide musical sensation One Direction to produce a new line of toys and games based on the members of the popular boy band....

Toy Industry Foundation Opens 2012 “Play Connects” Grant Cycle. April 25, 2012
— The Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) opened the 2012 Play Connects grant cycle today (April 24th) to provide up to three $10,000 grants to children’s charities nominated by members of the Toy Industry Association (TIA)...

Ubooly Plush Toy Uses Your iPhone or iPad to Teach Children. April 25, 2012 — What’s orange, furry, adorable and can teach your kids Spanish...

Catching Up With Tegu, 2 Years Later. April 25, 2012 — Tegu is two years old now, and to celebrate they’re introducing a new...

Asia's first Legoland to open ahead of schedule. April 25, 2012 — Asia's first Legoland theme park, dedicated to the popular toy bricks, will open in Malaysia in September...

NRF Urges Senate Committee To Support Sales Tax Fairness Bill. April 25, 2012 — The National Retail Federation today urged a Senate committee examining federal tax reform to support legislation that would require Internet retailers to collect sales tax the same as local merchants....

Gas Prices No Match When It Comes To Mom, According To NRF Survey. April 25, 2012
— Riding the coattails of a spring where they spent freely on everything from garden supplies...

NPD: Most shoppers say price has to be right before they shop. April 25, 2012
— Price trumps sales and special deals, customer service, and convenience as a factor...

Walmart creates new role to handle bribery allegations. April 25, 2012 — Amidst allegations of bribery at its Mexican affiliate, Wal-Mart Stores has created...

Young people's health is not keeping pace. April 25, 2012 — Although the health of the world's infants and children has improved significantly...

Exclusive: Chris Brown teams with Ron English for toy line. April 25, 2012 — Chris Brown is teaming with prolific street artist Ron English to create...

TIA’s Second Annual California Toy Day Delivers Impactful Program. April 25, 2012 — Small, mid-size and large toy companies met one-on-one with more than 30 legislators to discuss the toy industry’s key legislative issues...

Sandbox Summit Explores Digital Kids, Parents, and Play. April 25, 2012 — Educators and scholars, toy and game designers, developers, child psychologists, digital media producers...

Pixar announces spooky new project for 'Toy Story 3' director. April 25, 2012 — Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich is one of the foremost experts on The Shining, so his bona fides...

Girls' Jackets Recalled by Louise Paris; Waist Drawstrings Pose Entanglement Hazard; Sold Exclusively at Ross Stores. April 25, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 13,000 "Me Jane" and "B-Hip Kids by Me Jane" girls' jackets with faux fur trim from Louise Paris Ltd, sold exclusively at Ross Stores, Inc. nationwide from November 2011 through January 2012 for about $20. Consumers should immediately remove the drawstrings from the jackets to eliminate the hazard and contact Louise Paris for instructions on how to receive a full refund.

Youth Jacket Recalled by PUMA; Waist Drawstrings Pose Entanglement Hazard. April 25, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 5,000 PUMA USA V-Konstruct Training Jacket with Pockets, sold at clothing retail stores nationwide and online from January 2007 through January 2012 for between $12 and $55. Consumers should stop using these recalled youth jackets immediately and return the product to the retailer to obtain a full refund.

Disney Publishing Leaving White Plains for California, NYC . April 25, 2012 — Just short of five years after it relocated most of its New York City...

Jakks Pacific to talk with Oaktree Capital about new bid. April 24, 2012
— The Malibu toy maker agrees to give the L.A. management firm inside information...

rubber duck ducky usa made toysUglydoll Expands Licensing Program. April 24, 2012 — Pretty Ugly has announced a variety of new partnerships aimed at broadening...

Hape Wins Four PAL Awards. April 24, 2012 — Hape North America, a leading worldwide toy manufacturer, has won Four PAL Awards. The PAL Award (Play Advances Language), established by respected speech and language expert, Sherry Artemenko, recognizes exceptional toys, games and books that, through their design, content, quality and character, engender play that advances language, according to a press release. The PAL award winners include At the Farm, Mini Maracas, Garden Salad, and Girl Body Puzzle.

Study: Only 17% of Specialty Retailers Offer Dedicated Mobile Site. April 24, 2012 — In a study of 75 online specialty retailers, only 17% of the companies...

NRF Names Bill Thorne Senior Vice President Of Communications And Public Affairs. April 24, 2012 — The National Retail Federation announced today that Bill Thorne has been named the association’s Senior Vice President of Communications and Public Affairs...

Damco Elects Bottle to Raise Its Profile. April 24, 2012 — Damco, one of the world’s leading third party logistics providers, has appointed BOTTLE to handle its PR brief for 2012...

Can Video Games Promote Healthier Aging? April 24, 2012 — Videogame technology has significant benefits for older adults by providing cognitive stimulation...

LeapFrog To Webcast First Quarter 2012 Results On May 3, 2012. April 24, 2012 — LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE:LF) today announced that it will webcast its first quarter 2012 results conference call on Thursday, May 3, 2012...

JAKKS Pacific Receives "Partner Award of Excellence" From Target. April 24, 2012
— Leading U.S. toy and consumer products company, JAKKS Pacific, Inc. JAKK +2.02% received the 2011 "Partner Award of Excellence" from Target for both Girls and Boys departments...

15 Tips for Smarter Tradeshow Travel. April 24, 2012 — Tradeshows can challenge even the smartest business traveler. It starts with the hotel...

First Charity Giveaway Took Place at Jake's Toy Box on April 23, 2012! Dan Driver, owner of Jake's Toy Box in Arvada, Colorado and one of the winning retailers in TDmonthly's "2012: A Year of Charity" giveaway contest has an extra reason to smile today. His first chosen charity,Stride of Colorado, came to pick up a donation of incredible specialty toys from Hape International, Schoenhut Piano Company, Safari Ltd. and Magicforest Ltd. The total package that Stride received is worth approximately $1400! Two more charities, The Hope House of Colorado and The Family Tree, Colorado, will be receiving toys from Jake's Toy Box shortly.

recycle symbol reuse reduce Doll House & Toy Store Gives Away 100 Toys on Wednesday the 25th! April 23, 2012 — Sari Powazek, owner of the Doll House & Toy Store in Scottsdale Arizona and one of the winners of TDmonthly's "2012: A Year of Charity Contest," has set Wednesday, April 25, 2012 at 2:00 pm as the day when lucky local children's charities get to pick up more than 100 amazing specialty toys from her toy store! Sari will be giving away high-quality toys from Hape International, Safari Ltd., Schoenhut Piano Company and Magciforest Ltd.

Toy maker Hasbro loses $2.6M in 1st quarter on severance costs, revenue declines. April 23, 2012 — Hasbro Inc. posted a first-quarter loss on Monday, weighed down by costs...

Vast Mexico Bribery Case Hushed Up by Wal-Mart After Top-Level Struggle. April 23, 2012 — Confronted with evidence of widespread corruption in Mexico, top Wal-Mart executives focused more on damage control...

Earth Day: Disney Toy Sale Proceeds Benefit the Jane Goodall Chimpanzee Preservation. April 23, 2012
— The Jane Goodall Institute for Chimpanzee Preservation has drawn a good deal of attention...

Pinkstinks campaign calls for end to sale of makeup toys to under eights. April 23, 2012 — Emma Moore first became aware of the craze for children's makeup...

Orb Factory Hires Senior Project Manager. April 23, 2012 — The Orb Factory Limited is thrilled to announce their newest hire, Laura Binder, to fulfill the new role of Senior Project Manager...

Children's Museum of Manhattan Names Illinois Based Learning Resources as Receipient of Inaugural Corporate Leadership Award. April 23, 2012 — The Children’s Museum of Manhattan (CMOM) announced today the selection of Learning Resources, Inc. as the recipient of its inaugural Corporate Leadership Award, according to a press release.

Hape Announces an Exclusive contest for ASTRA Retailers to Win a Trip to China. April 20, 2012 — Hape North America, a leading worldwide toy manufacturer, has announced a contest for ASTRA retailers to win a trip of a lifetime to China. Hape will select one ASTRA retailer to join them on an all-expenses paid trip for two to the cosmopolitan city of Shanghai and their production facility and bamboo conservancy in Ningbo. Winners will visit Hape’s state-of-the-art manufacturing campus, which produced over 8.6 million toys in 2011. For a chance to win the trip, ASTRA retailers must submit a photo of their best four foot section of Hape merchandised product to marketing@hapetoys.com by May 15, 2012. One lucky retailer will win and be announced at Hape’s booth (216) during the Cocktail Reception on Monday, June 11th at ASTRA Marketplace in Baltimore.

Study: Playing a Video Game Helps Teens Beat Depression. April 20, 2012 — Video games are more often regarded as causes of mental illness than as cures...

Microsoft Posts Record Revenue — but Xbox Is Slipping. April 20, 2012 — Microsoft reported record revenues of $17.41 billion for the past quarter, but profits slipped 2.4%...

Exposure to Air Pollution in Pregnancy May Boost Chances of Obesity in Kids. April 20, 2012 — It’s easy to blame parents when young children gain too much weight...

‘Frogger’ video game being brought to new life. April 20, 2012 — Frogger — the video game with the frog that runs across a busy street...

TV On in the Background? It’s Still Bad for Kids. April 20, 2012 — Too much television can be detrimental for kids’ development, even when...

How the Video Games Industry Is Faring. April 20, 2012 — A look at results from selected companies in the video games business...

Augmented Reality Toys for iPhone and iPad: A Work in Progress. April 20, 2012 — Can traditional toy makers capitalize on the rise of smartphones and tablets...

Mattel Ranks No. 12 Among 100 Best. April 20, 2012 — Mattel, Inc. today announced it has been named one of CRO Magazine's "100 Best Corporate Citizens" for the fourth consecutive year, ranking No. 12...

Hasbro Debuts at No. 23 in CR Magazine's Annual "100 Best Corporate Citizens" List. April 20, 2012
— Global branded play company Hasbro has been named to CR Magazine's 2012 "100 Best Corporate Citizens" list, debuting at number 23...

rubber duck ducky usa made toysThe Rubber Duck Industry Returns to America Where is was Originally Invented. April 20, 2012 — CelebriDucks is bringing the rubber duck industry back to the USA, and will be manufacturing in Ohio. The company is best known for their line of celebrity ducks, according to a press release.

Did the PS Vita Show Too Much of Its Game Face at Launch? April 20, 2012 — Conventional wisdom: Launch strong, show your best hand, win hearts and minds...

Toymaker Stocks Are Not Child's Play. April 20, 2012 — There was a lot of groaning about toy manufacturers this week when a couple of toymakers missed the mark...

JAKKS Responds To Oaktree's Conditional Non-Binding Expression Of Interest. April 20, 2012 — In response to a letter to Jakks Pacific, Inc. (the "Company") from Oaktree Capital Management, L.P....

Consumer Confidence in U.S. Rises to Match Four-Year High. April 20, 2012 — Household confidence improved last week to match the highest level in four years...

One Area Where Amazon.com Doesn’t Have an Advantage. April 20, 2012 — Walmart and other retailers have fought unsuccessfully for years to level the e-commerce playing field...

Study: Twitter, LinkedIn appropriate social media building blocks for retail marketers. April 20, 2012 — The Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council on Monday published the final installment of its five-part report on social media...

recycle symbol reuse reduce Customers Unwilling to Pay More for Eco-friendly Products. April 19, 2012 — While 46% of consumers are more inclined to purchase a product if it is eco-friendly...

Kids Get More Active When Given More Toy Choices, Studies Show. April 19, 2012
— In an age when even preschoolers have electronic toys and devices...

Mobile Apps Reshape Toys and Learning. April 19, 2012
— While older generations simply had to memorize facts at school, today's children...

Tonner Doll Company Announces License for Lionsgate's The Hunger Games. April 19, 2012 — Tonner Doll Company has been granted the license for character figures based on the film The Hunger Games...

JAKKS Pacific(R) Reports First Quarter Results for 2012. April 18, 2012 — JAKKS Pacific, Inc. JAKK +0.28% reported results for the Company's first quarter ended March 31, 2012. Net sales for the first quarter of 2012 were $73.4 million...

Mindtwister USA Appoints New CEO. April 18, 2012 — Effective March 15th Mathias Ringstrom has stepped down as Sales Manager and Co-Owner of MTUSA. We appreciate all his contributions. Mathias has decided to pursue other interests and we wish him continued success as both a friend and colleague. With his departure, we are very pleased to announce the promotion of Monica Lucas to CEO of MTUSA.

kazoo toys charity donation logo toy store specialty toysKazoo Toys' Giant Giveaway Aligned with Two Giant Events. April 18, 2012 — Diana Nelson, one of the winning retailers of TDmonthly's "2012: A Year of Charity" giveaway event has amazing plans for the 115 toys she will be receiving from great companies like Schoenhut Piano Company, Safari Ltd., Hape International and Magicforest Ltd....

BERG Toys sets its sights on the US. April 18, 2012 — In early 2012 BERG Toys acquired BERG USA LLC, the exclusive importer and distributor of BERG Toys products in the USA. BERG Toys is opening an office in the US, a new milestone for the Dutch brand and international market leader in pedal go-karts, according to a press release.

Waboba Keeps The Bounce In Its Marketing and Sales Efforts. April 18, 2012 — To maintain the momentum generated by "The Ball that bounces on Water," Waboba USA has named Jordan Sullivan as Director of Marketing and Sales Manager, according to a press release.

Red! No, Blue! No, Light Blue! April 18, 2012 — Why do little kids care so much about favorite colors? When my older daughter...

Riverdale's Teens Get Gender-Swapped in 'Archie' #636. April 18, 2012 — After more than 70 years of gender comedy and never-ending love triangle...

Domo Collectibles Stomp into Market. April 18, 2012
— Big Tent Entertainment and Mezco Toyz are teaming for a line of Domo collectibles...

Aurora World Announces All New Plush Lines for Infants, Toddlers. April 18, 2012 — Aurora World Inc. announced details for three brand new plush gift lines geared towards new parents and their children. Infants and toddlers can get cozy with Aurora’s western-themed Lil’ Howdys, an interactive collection of Crinkle Friends “Brights,” and Quizzies – a plush line...

Mattel's CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript. April 17, 2012 — Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to Mattel's First Quarter 2012 Earnings Conference Call...

LA-area toy company accused of laundering proceeds from Mexican, Colombian drug trafficking. April 17, 2012 — Five people were arrested Monday in a money laundering scheme that allegedly...

Toys R Us: Some Special Circumstances, But Still A Big Box Retailer With A Big Box Retailer's Problems. April 17, 2012 — Vornado Realty Trust, which owns a stake in Toys R Us, may be on the brink...

Jazwares Secures CNE's 'Regular Show'. April 17, 2012 — Jazwares has been named the master toy licensee for Cartoon Network Enterprises...

King.com videogames overtake Electronic Arts on Facebook. April 17, 2012 — European start-up King.com has overtaken video-games giant Electronic Arts on Facebook...

recalled crib kids product baby bed dropsideMattel 1st-quarter net income falls as sales of Barbie and Hot Wheels decline. April 16, 2012 — Mattel Inc. said Monday that its first-quarter profit dropped 53 percent...

From Hollywood Actress to Toy Store CEO. April 16, 2012 — Five years ago, Kellie Martin, the actress famous for playing Becca Thacher...

Longtime toy store closing doors. April 16, 2012 — After more than 25 years in business, a Columbia mainstay is closing its doors...

March Retail Sales Growth Marks Positive Start To Spring, According To NRF. April 16, 2012 — Thanks to an earlier Easter holiday and unseasonably warm weather through much...

NRF Announces Top 5 Finalists For “This Is Retail” Video Contest. April 16, 2012 — The National Retail Federation today announced the top five finalists of its “This is Retail” video contest...

2012 First Quarter International Trade Wrap-Up. April 16, 2012 — As previously reported in Toy News Tuesday, the Toy Industry Association (TIA) recently updated the International Trade section of its website...

Russo upped to president of Jakks Pacific International. April 13, 2012
Malibu, California-based toymaker Jakks Pacific has promoted veteran toy industry executive Carmine Russo...

Furby's Coming Back! Five Things to Know About This Iconic Toy. April 13, 2012 — It was the toy for Gen Y and the new millennium. And now Furby...

Classic Toy Makers Get Creative In The Digital Age. April 13, 2012
For the toy industry, times have been tough. Sales at some of the biggest ...

Sweden 'Trying To Banish Gender' Through Toy Advertising And Language. April 13, 2012
— Even in 2012, it's a big deal that a young boy dressed up as Spiderman poses with a toy baby carriage...

9 Must Have Summer Toys of 2012. April 13, 2012 — With the summer blockbusters practically pounding on our doors, the Toy Maniac is ready...

Are TV and Video Games Making Kids Fat? April 13, 2012 — Talk about a disparity between theory and practice. The American Academy of Pediatrics ...

Thousands of Children at Colorado Air Force Bases Gifted with Toys and Games. April 13, 2012 — Nearly 3,000 children living on three air force bases in Colorado Springs received an exciting treat on April 11th at a special toy giveaway by the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) with Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services...

Top Retailers Support BLE Retail Mentoring Programme. April 13, 2012
Brand Licensing Europe, the Advanstar-organized exhibition, has announced that 40 buying professionals...

US video game sales fall 25 percent in March as PS Vita fails to spark turnaround. April 12, 2012
— U.S. retail sales of video game hardware, software and accessories fell 25 percent...

Delta Children's Products Named Vendor of the Year by Toys "R" Us & Babies "R" Us. April 12, 2012 — Delta Children's Products has received a "Vendor of the Year" Award from Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us...

"The Hunger Games" Trigger Sales at Archery, Toy, Book and Specialty Stores. April 12, 2012 — In recent weeks, Barry Hall, the owner of Newbury Archery Pro Shop...

Ellen L. Brothers, President of American Girl, Announces Retirement. April 12, 2012 — Ellen L. Brothers, President of American Girl and Executive Vice President of Mattel, announced today her decision to retire...

Forbes Earnings Preview: Mattel. April 12, 2012
— Wall Street is high on Mattel (MAT), expecting it to report earnings that...

Tinkering Around; Mattel & Hasbro Taken Out by the Tot Tablet. April 12, 2012
— It has certainly been a bumpy quarter for toy companies across the nation...

recalled crib kids product baby bed dropsideNan Far Woodworking Recalls to Repair Drop-Side Cribs Due to Entrapment, Suffocation and Fall Hazards; Sold Exclusively at jcpenney. April 12, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 16,700 Rockland Furniture Drop-side Cribs from Nan Far Woodworking Co. Ltd., sold exclusively at jcpenney stores and online at jcpenney.com from January 2005 through December 2008 for between $150 and $400. The cribs' drop sides can malfunction, detach or otherwise fail, causing part of the drop side to fall out of position, creating a space into which an infant or toddler can roll and become wedged or entrapped, which can lead to strangulation or suffocation. A child can also fall out of the crib. Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled cribs and contact Nan Far Woodworking for a free repair kit that will immobilize the drop side. In the meantime, find an alternate, safe sleep environment for the child such as a bassinet, play yard or toddler bed depending on the child's age.

2012 LIMA International Licensing Excellence Awards Ballot Set with 85 Nominees in 17 Categories. April 12, 2012 — A diverse lineup of 85 nominees will vie for the licensing industry’s highest honors...

'Yo Gabba Gabba!' Expands Toy Line. April 12, 2012 — Wildbrain Entertainment has sealed a deal with Jazwares for an expanded toy line...

Target a Canadian Game Changer, Not so Fast. April 12, 2012 — The Canadian consumer is a value conscious, “tough nut to crack”...

Deloitte Consumer Spending Index sees rise in March. April 12, 2012 — After projecting that consumers likely would spend the same or more at retail...

Crayola and Mattel Announce Colorful New Multi-Year Worldwide Licensing Partnership. April 11, 2012 — Mattel, Inc., the world's largest toy company, and Crayola, the largest children's art supply maker, announced today a global licensing partnership. The two companies join forces, giving children creative experiences that bring popular Barbie and Hot Wheels properties to life with Crayola colors.

'Battleship' leads attack of game-based movies. April 11, 2012 — "Battleship" steams into movie theaters overseas this week, giving international audiences the first...

12 Cringingly Bootleg Toys. April 11, 2012 — The summer blockbuster season is nearly upon us, which means there will soon ...

TIA Senior Director of Trade Show and Event Marketing Recognized for Success in Show Industry. April 11, 2012 — Toy Industry Association (TIA) Senior Director of Trade Show and Event Marketing Kimberly Carcone was recently included on EXPO Magazine's Elite Leaders list for 2012...

Dollarama thrives as it awaits more U.S. competition. April 11, 2012 — Dollar stores in the United States have seen much success in recent years...

CPSC Announces New Lead Limit Exemptions for Certain Aluminum Alloy Components in Children’s Ride-On Products. April 10, 2012The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced last week that it has granted an exception to the 100 parts per million (ppm) lead content limit under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) for certain aluminum alloy components...

Xbox Grows, With Users, Beyond Videogames. April 10, 2012
— With Internet-connected TVs, add-on boxes like Apple TV or Roku, and iPads...

Making A 'Hunger Games' Video Game Is A Bad Idea. April 10, 2012 — Something about the notion of turning the popular young adult novel The Hunger Games...

Why video games are good for you — the cheat sheet. April 10, 2012 — Relax, parents. Video games are good for you and your kids. So argues Scott Steinberg...

JAKKS Pacific to Announce Results for First Quarter 2012. April 10, 2012 — JAKKS Pacific, Inc. JAKK -2.59% will announce results for its first quarter of 2012 on Wednesday, April 18, 2012, before the stock market opens...

Hasbro to reduce product packaging. April 10, 2012 — Hasbro continues its efforts to reduce its environmental impact. On Tuesday, the Pawtucket-based toy maker announced that it's going to reduce materials...

Gamestop to Pay $15 Per User to Settle Used-Game Suit. April 10, 2012 — California consumers are eligible for $15 in coupons and checks from Gamestop...

recalled bike seat kids productRetail Container Traffic to Increase 3.2 Percent in April. April 10, 2012Import cargo volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected...

Toy Industry Compensation and Benefits Survey Underway. April 10, 2012 — A confidential, comparative benchmark survey against which toy companies can compare the compensation and benefit offerings for more than 70 toy industry position titles was launched today (April 10) and will remain open through Friday, May 11th...

Kronos: Fewer people applying for retail jobs. April 10, 2012 — The Retail Labor Index released by Kronos Inc. indicated that applications for retail jobs are waning....

Electronics in Spider-Man Product Web. April 10, 2012
— Marvel has granted Lexibook rights to design, manufacture and distribute Spider-Man...

Transformers Prime Toys Roll Out. April 10, 2012
— Everyone knows now that the Transformers cartoon was based on the toys...

McFarlane Toys Set to Release Derek Jeter Statue. April 10, 2012 — In another life, Todd McFarlane -- known for his comic illustrations and acclaimed...

Pressed From All Sides, Toys ‘R’ Us Fights to Reinvent Itself. April 9, 2012 — For nearly two years, Toys “R” Us has waited for the right moment...

Autism may be linked to obesity during pregnancy. April 9, 2012 — Obesity during pregnancy may increase chances for having a child with autism...

'The Hunger Games': Mattel debuts Katniss Everdeen Barbie -- EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK. April 9, 2012
— We told you last month that — whether you like it or not...

Will and Kate dolls may already be sold out in pre-orders. April 9, 2012
— It may be too late to pre-order a pair of Barbie doll versions...

‘A good, interesting toy is basically an idea and an experience’. April 9, 2012 — Hurt and made cynical by the lack of respect for heritage-based, craft industry...

Netflix Signs Up for Hasbro Content. April 9, 2012 — Hasbro Studios is making content available on Netflix through a new multi-year deal...

At Texas Schools, Making Do on a Shoestring. April 9, 2012
— School buses passed by 16-year-old Aubrey Sandifer as he walked home one recent afternoon...

Executive Q&A: CEO of Patch Products paid to play. April 9, 2012 — As a first-time father in the 1980s, Bob Wann was interested in toys...

Morgan Spurlock on How Comic-Con is Like a Job Fair. April 9, 2012
— Documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock’s latest pop doc, “Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope”...

NRF Announces Top 20 Finalists For “This Is Retail” Video Contest. April 9, 2012 — The National Retail Federation announced today the 20 finalists of its “This is Retail” video contest...

The Future of Electronic Payments. April 9, 2012
— In the 1950s, when science fiction writers dreamed about the coming age...

recalled bike seat kids productTodson Recalls Bicycle Child Carrier Seats Due to Laceration and Fingertip Amputation Hazards. April 6, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 40,000 Topeak Babyseat™ II Bicycle Carrier Seats from Todson Inc., sold at J&B Imports, REI, Action and Hawley, independent bicycle dealers, distributors and other retail stores nationwide and online at REI.com from January 2009 through April 2012 for between $140 and $180. A child can place his or her fingers in the opening at the grab bar's hinge mechanism. When the consumer lifts the grab bar to remove the child from the seat, the child's fingertips can be caught in the hinge mechanism, posing a laceration and fingertip amputation hazard to the child. Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled carrier seats and contact Todson to receive a free hinge cover retrofit kit.

Get Ready Kids: Gak(TM) is Back! Floam® Comes Home. April 6, 2012 — NSI International and Nickelodeon today announced the launch of all-new Floam and Gak products...

Project Glass: Google Shows Off, Teases Augmented Reality Spectacles. April 6, 2012 — Being a four-eyes has never been so cool...

5 Reasons Not to Buy Your Daughter Pink Legos. April 6, 2012 — If you’ve been to a toy store lately, then you’ve probably noticed...

The Toy Fair. April 6, 2012 — The Toy Fair isn't for kids. The show's held yearly at the Javits Center...

Port Surveillance News: CPSC Investigators Find, Stop Nearly 650,000 Unsafe Products at the Start of Fiscal Year 2012. April 6, 2012 — Investigators with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) prevented more than half a million violative and hazardous imported products from reaching the hands of consumers in the first quarter of fiscal year 2012...

Panjiva: Chocolate and toy bunny shipments are hopping this Easter. April 6, 2012 — Folks who celebrate Easter should expect to see a bumper crop of chocolate and toy bunnies

Who Decided That Girls Need Pink Toys? Why Gender Marketing is a Bad Idea. April 6, 2012
— I’m seeing pink. It’s enough that girls must have pink clothing, pink...

Unseasonable weather warms up March sales. April 6, 2012 — March was a good month for retailers overall, as an early spring...

The retailer Americans love to hate, Consumer Reports readers anyway. April 6, 2012 — Walmart is the nation’s largest food retailer, and 140 million people shop...

Obama Signs Bill to Promote Start-Up Investments. April 6, 2012 — President Obama, eager to promote his administration’s efforts to revive the job market...

Barbie Announces Plan to Turn the White House Pink with a Run for the Oval Office. April 5, 2012 — Today, Barbie® doll formally threw her pink hat into the presidential campaign ring by unveiling the new 2012 Barbie® I Can Be…™ President doll....

'Skylanders' make move to Apple's App Store. April 5, 2012 — Activision's budding kids franchise Skylanders has made its debut on Apple's iOS...

Facts and Figures 2012: In Children's, 'Hunger Games' Rule. April 5, 2012 — With the release of the movie version of The Hunger Games, Panem fever is everywhere...

Why Wal-Mart Is Worried About Amazon. April 5, 2012 — Five years ago, the world’s largest retail chain didn’t have to worry much...

Study: Social media may ease negative word-of-mouth impact. April 5, 2012
— A study released Tuesday by customer feedback management firm CFI Group found...

Rarest and Most Expensive Garbage Pail Kids Cards Ever Made. April 5, 2012 — Your old Garbage Pail Kids cards could be worth an easy $4,000...

GameStop Begins Buying and Selling Used Skylanders Toys. April 5, 2012 — GameStop might not accept your band game instruments as trade anymore...

Scholastic Media Launches Game Apps on Nokia Lumia Smartphones. April 5, 2012
— Scholastic Media announced today that it will launch a selection of its game apps on Nokia Lumia smartphones. This is the first time Scholastic’s apps will be made available on the Windows Phone OS, according to a press release.

Hasbro CEO Goldner's 2011 Pay Dropped 67% To $7.6M. April 4, 2012 — Total pay for Hasbro Inc.'s (HAS) President and Chief Executive Brian Goldner declined 67% to $7.6 million in 2011...

Smithsonian celebrates 'Art of Video Games'. April 4, 2012 — Thirty to 40 years ago, when arcade and console games were primitive...

Proposed Rhode Island Legislation for Heavy Metals in Children’s Products Contradicts Federal Law. April 4, 2012 — New legislation being proposed in Rhode Island banning lead, cadmium and mercury in all children’s products...

Easter deals hop up at Walmart. April 4, 2012 — Walmart has bolstered its Easter assortment, offering a number of popular holiday items...

Why Are Parents Less Likely to Take Little Girls Outside to Play. April 4, 2012 — Everyone knows the sex stereotypes: boys like to play sports; girls like to play house...

Autism Rises: More Children than Ever Have Autism, but Is the Increase Real? April 4, 2012 — Autism rates continue to rise, according to a new government survey...

Spielwarenmesse eG and NürnbergMesse build a new chapter for the future. April 4, 2012 — Spielwarenmesse eG and NürnbergMesse GmbH extend their general agreement until 2021 and join forces into the next decade...

My Little Pony Design Studio Sewed up. April 4, 2012 — Hasbro and FashionPlaytes, an online clothing design experience, have partnered to launch...

Tech toy Companies Like LeapFrog Aim to Teach Reading. April 4, 2012
— Teaching children to read and make sense of the symbols in front of them has typically fallen...

Speakers and Topics Announced for PlayCon 2012. April 4, 2012 — PlayCon, TIA’s International Conference of Play Professionals has unveiled an impressive roster of industry thought-leaders...

US asks India to Relax Norms for Import of Poultry, Toys. April 3, 2012 — The US has asked India to relax the guidelines on import of items like toys, wine...

Mattel Kicking Out Fat Dividend, Barbie's Still A Buy. April 3, 2012
— Mattel, Inc. (MAT) offers investors solid growth and a nice stream of dividend income...

Kmart's 'Hot 8' Toys Ignite Play for Summer. April 3, 2012 — Coinciding with unseasonably warm weather throughout many parts of the country, Kmart has announced the summer's "Hot 8" toys...

How toys can save lives. April 3, 2012
— Jose Gomez-Marquez can turn a toy helicopter into an inhaler...

Top 10 toys and gifts for children with autism, picked by parents. April 3, 2012 — When it comes to living with a child who has autism, educational experts, pediatricians and scientists all have their advice for parents...

PERSPECTIVES: A Conversation with Chris Sherman, Founder and CEO of Engage Digital. April 3, 2012 — As the Founder and CEO of Engage Digital, Chris Sherman is on the cutting edge of play and technology...

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Announces ACE Filing System for Ocean and Rail Cargo. April 3, 2012 — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced a Federal Register notice that will implement the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) for transmitting required advance information to CBP for rail and cargo...

Dorel Licenses Safety 1st Brands. April 3, 2012 — Dorel Juvenile Group USA and juvenile products manufacturer Best Brands Consumer Products...

Bigjigs® Toys Introduces New Bigjigs® Rail Products to U.S. Market. April 2, 2012 — Bigjigs® Toys, which arrived in the U.S. specialty toy market in 2011 to rave reviews from toy retailers...

Etch A Sketch launches political-themed ad campaign after gaffe by Romney aide. April 2, 2012 — The 104-year old company that makes Etch A Sketch is launching new political-themed ads...

Getting tough on harmful toys (Malaysia). April 2, 2012 — Many remain unaware that all toys must now bear a Malaysian Conformity (MC) sticker...

Toys tell a lot about history. April 2, 2012 — At my antiques appraisal events across the country, audience members often bring antique and vintage toys...

Learning Express, the Educational Toy Franchise Announces Innovative Franchise Store Promotion Program. April 2, 2012 — The national educational toy store franchise Learning Express announced a new promotional program for their national franchise stores. In a recent press release Learning Express announced, "One of our biggest goals for the year is to get customers to come in and stay for the experience! So when we asked Learning Express storeowners if they were interested in hosting our vendor promotion, our first official Vendor Week partnership, over 75% of them signed up. Our storeowners have a desire to involve their customers and boost their sales. The purpose of Vendor Weeks is to partner with top Learning Express vendors to host exciting promotions and events for customers."

Consumer spending rose 0.8% in Februaryt. April 2, 2012 — Consumer spending rose 0.8% in February, the Commerce Department said Friday...

NRF Announces Top 20 Finalists For “This Is Retail” Video Contestt. April 2, 2012
— The National Retail Federation announced today the 20 finalists of its “This is Retail” video contest, determined from scoring by prominent retail executives at NRF member companies...

FDA Announcement Regarding BPA Expected Today. March 31, 2012 — By March 31, 2012 the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) plans to decide whether or not to continue allowing food packaging that contains BPA...

Apple labor plan to ripple through China factories. March 30, 2012 — Apparel makers, toy companies and other manufacturers wrestling with rising wages in China now face new pressures...

Mattel to Make ‘Bald Friend of Barbie’. March 30, 2012 — Mattel, the maker of Barbie, will produce a bald fashion doll for children who have lost their hair...

Employee engagement in a social media world. March 30, 2012 — Retailers are now well familiar with social media as a means of engaging consumers...

Evolution to Evolve Zydeco's Floppets. March 30, 2012 — Evolution Management Group has been named the global licensing, sales and brand management,,,

Discovery Adds Poof-Slinky. March 30, 2012
— Discovery Communication has signed a new deal with licensee Poof-Slinky...

Tinkerers abuzz over old toys. March 30, 2012 — Decades-old playtime relics occupying space in dusty toy boxes or the basement are finding...

Xia-Xia hermit crab toys arrive on Nintendo DS. March 30, 2012 — Popular scuttling toy hermit crabs known as Xia-Xia pets can now be played with in a virtual world...

Toy Truck Gifts with Purchase Recalled by Happy Shirts Due to Fire Hazard. Sold Exclusively at Kohl's. March 30, 2012 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product: About 9,000 toy truck gifts with boy's t-shirts from Happy Shirts, sold exclusively at Kohl's stores nationwide and www.Kohls.com between February 2012 and March 2012 for about $20. Connections in the toy trucks battery compartment can smolder or catch the trucks on fire, posing a fire and burn hazard to consumers. Consumers should immediately take the toy trucks from children and remove the battery. Consumers can contact Happy Shirts for instructions on returning the truck for a refund.

Toy Meets Masterpiece with LEGO® Art Exhibition at OMSI. March 30, 2012
— Playing with LEGO® blocks will take on a whole new meaning to visitors of the upcoming The Art of the Brick exhibition at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI)...

Bologna 2012 Wrap-up: A Look at the Trends of the Show. March 30, 2012 — By most accounts, this year’s Bologna Book Fair was a vibrant one...

Great Start for Children's E-book Sales in 2012. March 30, 2012 — The Association of American Publishers publishes monthly sales revenue estimates based on figures supplied by participating publishers...



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Justina HuddlestonWriter's Bio: Justina Huddleston graduated Magna Cum Laude from Emerson College with a BA in Writing, Literature, and Publishing in 2009. After graduating she was the on-site director of the Boston Children's Museum gift store for a year, selling educational, developmental, and creative activity toys that tied in with the museum's exhibits. Justina also interned at children's book publisher Candlewick Press before moving from Boston to Los Angeles, where she is now Assistant Managing Editor at TDmonthly. Read more articles by this author

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