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August 2013 | Vol. XII - No. 8
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Toys in the News: 8-29-13


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

Toys"R"Us® Expands Year-Round Education Product Selection, Debuts All-New Imaginarium® Learning Line. August 29, 2013 — Toys"R"Us® today announced the expansion of its year-round education product selection in stores nationwide and online at Toysrus.com...

Five tips for retailers considering mobile payments in-store. August 29, 2013 — According to Gartner, mobile payments currently represent a £150bn market, but only 21% of...

Retailers tap software to pick best locations for new stores. August 29, 2013 — A Dunkin’ Donuts store on Woburn’s Main Street relocated less than 100 yards — from one end of a tiny strip mall to another — and added a drive-through last year. Sales soared more than 50 percent...

LeapFrog’s Toddler-Safe Texting Aims to Fend Off Amazon. August 28, 2013 — Toddler-safe texting has arrived. Spurred by burgeoning demand for kid-styled tablets...

Mattel gives more attention to American Girl’s younger sister. August 28, 2013 — Mattel’s American Girl brand, which saw its sales climb 14% last quarter...

Horizon Begins Shipments of the World's Most Technologically Advanced Toy Car. August 28, 2013 — Horizon Fuel Cell Technologies announces the launch of i-H2GO, an RC toy car that...

Retail Renaissance. August 27, 2013 — Retailers have historically been luddites and cheapskates when it comes to technology...

Samsung Announces A Galaxy Tab Just For Kids. August 27, 2013 — Samsung today confirmed its plans to launch a version of its Galaxy Tab...

The National Retail Federation Pushes Retail Careers. August 27, 2013 — Retailers facing the threat of a nationwide walkout at brand name chains...

Reality check: Theories on the next retail revolution. August 27, 2013 — Brian Kilcourse, managing partner for Retail Systems Research, took some time out...

At 99, Brookline toy store owner says the kids keep her going. August 27, 2013 — The price of the penny candy is up to 10 cents, but not much else has changed...

Bracing for coal in retailers' Christmas stockings. August 26, 2013 — Even with consumer confidence at a six-year high, retailers ranging from Target to...

Party on, Hasbro: The Toymaker Launches a Funny or Die Game. August 26, 2013
— If there is any truth to the old saying, “Everyone’s a comedian,” Hasbro...

Campaign aims to make retail careers trendy. August 26, 2013 — Retail has an image problem. In an industry that relies so strongly...

Kid You Not: The Very Serious Business of Building The Fastest-Growing Company in America. August 26, 2013 — Robb Fujioka is too busy, working too fast, to be watched. Underlings...

3 Secrets To Designing Great Toys, From LeapFrog and Ideo. August 23, 2013 — It looks like a toy--a colorful, chunky camera that’s just right for a child...

Banished from the cool table: Inside teen retail's struggle. August 23, 2013 — Abercrombie & Fitch, Aeropostale and American Eagle Outfitters have fallen out of fashion with fickle U.S. teen shoppers...

Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg on how Destiny was 'born modern' and why social connectivity will define the next-gen. August 23, 2013 — Successive generations of console gaming have been, historically, defined by improvements in graphics...

National Retail Federation Partners With Walmart To Host U.S. Manufacturing Summit. August 23, 2013 — The National Retail Federation today issued the following statements from NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay...

Toy maker gets new owners, not a new philosophy. August 22, 2013 — Jack Schylling started out, in 1975, as a Faneuil Hall street vendor, selling wind-up flying birds...

Toy association names year's top products. August 22, 2013 — The American Specialty Toy and Retailing Association, a nonprofit dedicated to the specialty toy industry...

How a DIY Dad Took the Toy World by Storm with Rainbow Loom. August 21, 2013 — Choon Ng, a Malaysian immigrant, wasn’t even thinking about entering the toy market...

HALO SleepSacks Wearable Blankets Recalled Due to Choking Hazard; Sold Exclusively at Babies R Us. August 21, 2013 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced a recall of about 27,000 HALO® SleepSack® Wearable Blankets with Pink Satin Flowers from Halo Innovations, sold exclusively at Babies R Us and www.babiesrus.com from December 2011 through July 2013 for about $25. Consumers should immediately stop using the wearable blankets and contact HALO Innovations for a pre-paid envelope containing instructions to remove and return the flower and order a free replacement product. 

Toys "R" Us expands holiday price-matching strategy. August 21, 2013 — Toys "R" Us is expanding its arsenal in the ultra-competitive Christmas toys price wars...

Disney to Shutter 10-Year-Old Toontown Multiplayer Game. August 21, 2013 — Walt Disney Co. (DIS) will close its Toontown Online video game for kids after 10 years, as the...

Retail earnings offer early signs of optimism. August 21, 2013 — Major U.S. retailers gave investors at least a little reason for financial optimism in closely...

Apple Park Recalls Children’s Loungewear Due to Violation of Federal Flammability Standard. August 20, 2013 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced a recall of about 7,250 Children’s two-piece loungewear sets from Apple Park LLC, sold at boutiques, children’s specialty stores nationwide and online at Amazon.com. The loungewear garments fail to meet children’s sleepwear federal flammability standards. Consumers should immediately stop using the pajamas and contact Apple Park for a full refund.

Early Promotions Resonate With Back-To-School Shoppers, According To NRF. August 20, 2013 — Back-to-school shopping began earlier than ever this year, and according to NRF’s 2013 Back-to-School...

The next big gaming trend is…plastic action figures? August 19, 2013 — The Skylanders gaming and action figure franchise just passed $1.5 billion in global sales...

Yet Another Gaming Deal for Hasbro. August 15, 2013 — Toy maker Hasbro Inc. (HAS) recently added another feather in its crown by signing...

NRF Issues Follow-Up Statement On The Javits Center Schedule Change For 2015. August 15, 2013 — The National Retail Federation today issued the following statement from Senior Vice President Bill Thorne...

Paramount Delays 'Ninja Turtles' Yet Again, This Time for Toy Strategy. August 15, 2013 — After a delay in 2012 caused by seemingly necessary budget cuts, the Michael Bay produced...

The Saga of Star Wars' Toys Is Almost Better Than the Actual Movies. August 15, 2013 — As much as the original Star Wars was a revolution in filmmaking that gave birth to the...

Toy industry seeks to defend benefits of apps for children, but scientific evidence is scant. August 14, 2013 — Fisher-Price promises its Laugh & Learn Apptivity mobile software will teach babies letters, numbers, shapes...

U.S. retail sales data points to improving economy. August 13, 2013 — A gauge of U.S. consumer spending rose in July at its fastest pace...

U.S. Stocks Fall as Retail Sales in July Miss Forecasts. August 13, 2013 — U.S. stocks fell, giving the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index a third day of losses...

Ian Shaffer: Mattel’s innovation should keep it ahead of the pack. August 13, 2013 — The toy industry is constantly changing to keep up with children’s imaginations...

Disney prepares a toy offensive with 'Infinity'. August 12, 2013 — With cartoony posters plastering the walls and toy figures standing at attention...

ShopperTrak: July 2013. August 12, 2013
— Shopper activity increased last month, as ShopperTrak anticipated. Retail foot traffic increased 5.2%...

Disney Teases Park Fans With Hints of New 'Star Wars' Attraction. August 12, 2013 — Walt Disney Co., known for teasing fans with clues to new attractions, used a convention in Anaheim...

Ubisoft Signs Console Game Deal with Hasbro. August 9, 2013 — Ubisoft has signed a deal with toy-giant Hasbro, allowing the publisher to develop...

Rosen Law Firm Expands Class Period in the JAKKS Pacific, Inc. Lawsuit Filed by the Firm. August 9, 2013 — The Rosen Law Firm, P.A. today announced that it has expanded the class period in its first-filed class action against JAKKS Pacific, Inc...

Swallowing Tiny Magnets Can Lead To Big Trouble For Kids. August 9, 2013
— About five years ago, emergency room doctor Julie Brown met an 8-year-old girl who...

Retail Sales: Don’t Look to July for Guidance on December. August 8, 2013 — It's become the latest word in conventional wisdom on retail sales: As July...

Toysmith Recalls Toy Light-Up Frogs and Ducks Due to Choking Hazard; Sold Exclusively at Cost Plus World Market. August 8, 2013 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced a recall of about 30,000 light-up toy frogs and ducks from Toysmith, sold exclusively at Cost Plus World Market between July 2012 and December 2012 for around $3. The metal conductor pin on the bottom of the toys can come out, posing a choking hazard. Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled products, put them away from children and return them to place of purchase for a full refund.

‘Planes’ is toy sale in search of a better movie. August 8, 2013 — There are funnier cartoons than the “Cars” universe of movies, and smarter...

Toy lasers can cause serious eye damage in kids, FDA warns. August 8, 2013 — Laser products may seem like fun children’s toys, but the highly-concentrated beams...

Tech exec convicted of stealing and reselling Legos. August 7, 2013 Thomas Langenbach, who was the vice president of a Silicon Valley firm and lived...

LeapFrog's New Ultimate Learning Tablet For Kids, LeapPad™ Ultra, Sells Out. August 7, 2013 — LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc., the leader in children's learning tablets, today announced that LeapPad™ Ultra, the ultimate learning tablet for kids, has sold out of pre-sale units...

What every company can learn from Lego. August 6, 2013 — Lego has built an open community of robotics enthusiasts who have helped make the company's products better...

Mattel's Astronaut Barbie Becomes a Mars Explorer with NASA Help. August 6, 2013 — A new collaboration between NASA and Mattel, the largest toy company in...

Construction Toys - LEGO vs. Everyone Else. August 6, 2013 — The construction toy category continues on its phenomenal growth path. This is extraordinary...

Disney Junior's 'Sofia The First' Hits Viewership High. August 6, 2013 — Disney Junior's breakout hit Sofia The First broke its own record late last week...

Trend report shows rise in QR and UPC mobile barcode scanning. August 5, 2013 — Scanbuy, Inc. released a quarterly trend report showing continued rapid growth of QR code and UPC mobile...

Toy manufacturers to demand removal of 5% VAT (India). August 5, 2013 — Manufacturers claim that Chinese toys have hampered their business to a great extent...

Retail Industry Adds 37,000 Jobs In July. August 2, 2013 — The National Retail Federation today issued the following statements from President and CEO Matthew Shay and Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz...

Hasbro adds $500 million to share buyback plan. August 2, 2013 — Toy maker Hasbro Inc. said Thursday that its board of directors authorized the company to buy back...

Court sides with retailers, goes against Fed rule on debit card fees. August 1, 2013 — A U.S. district court on Wednesday overturned a Federal Reserve rule capping the debit...

DreamWorks Animation Teams with Hasbro for Two Tentpole Franchise Properties. August 1, 2013 — In a powerful ghost and troll combo pack, Hasbro, Inc., a leading branded play company, and DreamWorks Animation have entered into an agreement to create toys and games inspired by DreamWorks Animation's B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations and Trolls properties...

Toy Industry Foundation's Toys Across America Brings Over 500,000 New Toys to Kids in Need in All 50 States Today. August 1, 2013 — Today, for the very first time, the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and its Toy Bank will distribute more than 500,000 new toys and games to children in need in all 50 states on a single day...

Activision Hits High Score As Zynga Declares Game Over. August 1, 2013 — There was plenty of big news for video game companies recently, as last week...

Safari Ltd® Announces New, Permanent Showroom. July 31, 2013 — Safari Ltd®, family-owned manufacturer and worldwide distributor of museum-quality, educational toys, is pleased to announce the grand opening of its new, permanent showroom. The showroom is located in Building 2, Suite 788 at AmericasMart® in Atlanta, Georgia.

Be Amazing! Toys Recalls Monster Science and Super Star Science Colossal Water Balls Due to Serious Ingestion Hazard. July 31, 2013 — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced a recall of about About 14,200 Monster Science and Super Star Science Colossal Water-Absorbing Polymer Balls from Be Amazing! Toys, sold at specialty retailers and education centers nationwide and online at Amazon.com, BeAmazingToys.com and WorldMarket.com from September 2010 through November 2012 for about $3 per package. Consumers should immediately take this recalled toy away from children and contact Be Amazing! Toys for a refund.

US economy grows at 1.7 pct. pace in 2nd quarter. July 31, 2013 — The U.S. economy grew from April through June at a modest seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.7 percent...

City of Friends multiplies with toy range. July 31, 2013 — Norway-based CreaCon Group has inked a deal with Hong Kong-based toyco...



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