September 06, 2012

ABC Kids Expo

China Toy expo

Jazwares Partners with Nickelodeon for Nicktoons Figures and Plush

NicktoonsJazwares has partnered with Nickelodeon to create Nicktoons-themed figures and plush. The line will feature Rugrats, Jimmy Neutron, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, Ren & Stimpy, Fairly Odd Parents, CatDog, Hey Arnold!, Danny Phantom, Rocket Power, Rocko’s Modern Life, and Tuff Puppy products.
Jazwares’ Nicktoons line will include 2-inch six-pack and four-pack figure sets, as well as 2-inch and 6-inch figures, and 7-inch plush toys. The line will be available this fall. 

China Toy Expo Expects Increase in Exhibitor Numbers

The 11th annual International Trade Fair for Toys & Hobby Articles, China Toy Expo, will be held October 11 to 13 at the Shanghai International Expo Center. The China Toy Expo has increased its expected number of exhibitors from 850 last year to more than 1,000 this year.
To make visits to China easier, a visitor guide will be sent to the pre-registered buyers before the event. The guide will include expo information and travel tips.
Visit China Toy Expo website www.china-toy-expo.com/en for more information. For exhibitor questions, contact Kent Luo at Luoliping@tjpa-china.org, or call 86-10-66038881.

UL-STR to Present Toy Safety Seminar on Regulatory Changes

UL-STR, an independent provider of quality assurance testing, audit, inspection, and responsible sourcing services for the consumer products industry, will present a toy safety seminar, Toy Safety—Implications of Regulatory Changes, on September 12 at its UK laboratory in Reading. The toy safety training event is part of an ongoing seminar series on the latest quality assurance issues.
The seminar will provide an update on changes in legislation that affect toy manufacturers and others in the toy supply chain who distribute products in the EU and North America. Topics will include: the EU Toy Safety Directive and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act; other overlapping regulations and requirements, such as the RoHS directive, the Cosmetics Regulation, and REACH; responsibilities of parties; and an update on supporting standards. 
Keith Richards, technical director for European Toys and Children’s Products at UL-STR, who has over 25 years of experience in toy and consumer product testing, will lead the session. The session runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on September 12. To register, email QAenquiries@ul.com.

Cloud b Introduces Disney Collection

Cloud b, creators of Sleep Sheep and Tranquil Turtle, has partnered with Disney for its first Disney-licensed collection. Disney Baby Dreamy Stars and Disney Baby Dreamy Sounds Soothers are designed to offer children a peaceful and comforting sleep with their beloved Disney friends.
Similar to Cloud b’s Twilight Turtle, Disney Baby Dreamy Stars transform any room into a starry night sky with a colorful, soothing projection of stars. The familiar image of Mickey Mouse’s ears will be hidden in the stars. Disney Baby Dreamy Stars are available in classic characters: Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Simba, and Dumbo.
Similar to Cloud b’s Sleep Sheep, Disney Baby Dreamy Sounds Soothers will lull little ones to sleep with classic melodies. It can also be attached to a crib with Velcro straps and features a removable sound box. Disney Baby Dreamy Sounds Soothers are available in classic characters: Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Simba, and Dumbo.

Aardman Signs Vivid as Canimals Master Toy Partner

CanimalsAardman Rights has signed No. 1 British Toy Company, Vivid, as their master toy licensee across a wide range of plush and collectibles in the UK and Eire. Vivid will be marketing and distributing the existing Voozclub plush lines along with manufacturing new collectable figurines due to launch on the market in the spring and summer of next year.
The Canimals co-production is a unique partnership between Aardman, Voozclub, and BRB with 44 seven-minute episodes in the series. Aimed at kids ages 6 to 10, the show features high-energy adventures of several can-shaped, CGI animals and the mischief that they get into in the real world. The show premiered in the UK on CITV, on September 3.

Giftees Awards 10 Best Gifts of the Year

The GifteesNominations are being accepted now through October 5 for the 2012 Giftees, which awards the 10 best gifts of the year. A $1,000 holiday shopping spree and other prizes are available to those who nominate, share, and vote.
Toy Insider Mom Laurie Schacht has been named a judge for this year’s awards. The panel of judges also includes bloggers from the Party Bluprints Blog, SheScribes, Foodie City Mom, Married My Sugardaddy, eVite, Red Tricycle, Scary Mommy, Retail Me Not Insider, Green Gifts Guide, and the Gifts.com Gift Gurus.
Finalists will be announced on October 22. Winners will be announced on November 26. For more details visit the Giftees site, giftees.gifts.com.

Fingerprint Digital to Expand Kids’ Mobile Gaming Network

Fingerprint Digital, Inc., has partnered with Corus Entertainment, Inc., to expand its educational and gaming applications for kids. Fingerprint’s learning and entertainment platform, Fingerprint Play, plans on offering more content and products with the help of Corus’ experience with kids media and entertainment. Currently, Fingerprint Play offers 14 apps available on Apple products. With this new partnership, Fingerprint Digital plans to expand availability of its games on the Android platform, add eight new applications by the end of the year, expand availability to older children, and expand internationally.

Miniclip Partners to Create Content for TV, Film, and Web

Miniclip.com, the online and mobile gaming company, has partnered with the producer and CEO of digital entertainment studio Worldwide Biggies, Albie Hecht. The partnership aims to create content for television, film, and the web. Hecht is known for developing and launching SpongeBob SquarePants, the Kids Choice Awards, and Dora the Explorer. The site attracts more than 70 million players monthly. It is known for its games Gravity Guy, Hambo, Sketch Star, Canyon Defense, Monster Island, Extreme Skater, iStunt, Minipets, and 8 Ball Pool. With this partnership, Miniclip hopes to transition the games to entertaining products on television as well as create different web series to attract Miniclip’s young audience.

Zoch Verlag Teams Up with Lion Rampant Imports for Distribution

Lion Rampant Imports has teamed up with Zoch Verlag to become an official partner distributor of Zoch titles in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. This partnership sees Lion Rampant join Rio Grande Games in the licensing and distribution of Zoch titles throughout North America. This means that Lion Rampant will be the place to find titles such as Ghost Blitz, Bausack, Bamboleo, and Hamsterrolle. A complete listing of available titles can be found at Lion Rampant’s website, www.lionrampantimports.com.

Chicago Retailers to Host Preschool Game Inventors

Inventors of five board games for preschool-aged kids will visit Chicago retailers to meet teachers, parents, and fans, and to play their games with kids.
Two inventors will participate, including Peggy Brown, inventor of Snug as a Bug in a Rug, Count Your Chickens, and Willy’s Wiggly Web; and Gina Manola, inventor of
Feed the Woozle and Race to the Treasure.
The inventor tour will be held on September 15 at three retailers: Cat and Mouse, from 10 a.m. to noon; Building Blocks, from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.; and Sweetivo, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Shoppers who purchase one of Brown’s or Manola’s games will receive a Weekend Family Pass to the Chicago Toy & Game Fair at Navy Pier, scheduled for November 17 and 18.

Safari Goes Green

Safari Ltd., manufacturer and worldwide distributor of animal replica toys, will offer electronic invoices, helping to eliminate paper while saving trees. Customers still have the option to receive a paper version, but Safari hopes that eventually all of its customers will opt for the electronic form.

Dragon-i Toys Appoints Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Dragon-i Toys has appointed John S. Tsien as senior vice president of sales and marketing. He will be responsible for Dragon-i Toys’ product development and sales processes and will be a part of developing the senior management team’s continuing growth strategy.
Tsien will be based in Hong Kong. Tsien last served as CEO of Toy State International, a lights and sound vehicle supplier. He comes to Dragon-i with toy industry experience, as well as experience in finance and management consulting.

Lego Releases Financial Figures

Lego’s profits increased some 36 percent in the first half of this year, about $341.2 million, the Associated Press has reported. Revenue increased 24 percent in the first half of this year to $1.5 billion.
The increase in profits is credited to Lego’s new Lego Friends line, targeted to girls. The company told the AP it sold twice as many Lego Friends sets than it had expected during the first six months of the year.

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