Cardea Solutions' Paul O'Carroll talks Cardea Cuddlies success and plans for further expansion

Jade Burke

By Jade Burke

June 9th 2016 at 11:54AM
UPDATED June 9th 2016 at 12:48PM
Cardea Solutions' Paul O'Carroll talks Cardea Cuddlies success and plans for further expansion

Last year marked Cardea Solutions debut in the plush toy arena with its Cardea Cuddlies collection, and now it seems the company wants to expand on its offering in this competitive marketplace.

Having dipped its toe into the soft toy space with its Cardea Cuddlies launch in October last year, Cardea Solutions’ plush line is proving to be a real success with consumers. 

With an extensive range, including Miffy, Anna Plush Club and the WWF Plush Collection, the company’s offering is remarkably varied, and the firm’s managing director, Paul O’Carroll, is looking to develop it even more in the future. 

“It’s our first foray into the soft toy space, and it’s been going well,” O’Carroll tells ToyNews. 

“The WWF and Anna Club Plush collections especially have become collectable, premium plush items. We are finding that adults are collecting them as well as children.“

Since the debut of its plush division, O’Carroll has revealed that the company is looking to extend its sales force and is now looking for independents to take on the range, in a bid to heighten the awareness around the WWF soft toy line. 

O’Carroll continues: “The animals that are replicated into plush are all endangered species, so it’s really good in terms of the educational value that the WWF range offers for children. 

“Kids can then go away and research the animals and get an understanding of why they are endangered or in conservation areas, because as a trading entity Cardea Solutions has always been an ethically positioned business.”

The WWF Plush collection boasts five ranges, including the Africa Range, the UK Woodlands Range, the Zoo, Aquarium and Aviary Range, the Asia Range and the Polar Regions range, with a donation going to the charity for every purchase. So far the firm has contributed £2,000. 

Lions, pandas, monkeys and more all feature in the WWF line, and according to O’Carroll, each of the items have all resonated well with children and adults since their introduction into retail. 

It’s clear that charity contributions are part of the foundation of the business, and it seems that WWF was an ideal fit for the firm. 

“It sits side by side with our own ethical positioning and throughout the history of the business we have always worked alongside charitable organisations and contributed,” explains O’Carroll. 

“It’s been great to be able to give exposure to the charity through the toys and educate the children and adults who are buying them.”

Alongside the firm’s plush division, Cardea Solutions is also known for its safety and security goods, and when asked about the importance of developing new products, O’Carroll made it clear that this was crucial to the business. 

“It’s extremely important especially in today’s age of ecommerce,” says O’Carroll. 

“Finding unique product ranges that add a unique feel to a business is absolutely imperative. For the bricks and mortar guys, it’s important that they have the opportunity to add something different to their shelves.”

With plans to increase its plush product offering, Cardea Solutions has revealed that there are a few brands it is already looking at. However, as these agreements have not yet been finalised, O’Carroll has assured ToyNews that he may be able to report on the news in the next few months – so watch this space. 

But that’s not all, as O’Carroll also has plans to ensure the business keeps expanding, and remains profitable in such a competitive marketplace.

O’Carroll concludes: “Our plans are to make sure we keep developing the skillset within the business and to keep our eyes on current trends.

“It’s just a great business to be involved in, it’s very rewarding and you drive away with a smile on your face. Whether it’s protecting children’s fingers or donating to the WWF, it’s a rewarding business to be involved in.”