Tesco backs board gaming this Christmas with ‘biggest own brand drive to date’

Tesco is going big on toys this Christmas, led by girls’ collectables and the largest push for the grocer’s own brand Carousel to date.

The supermarket giant is making short work of picking up the slack left behind by the closure of Toys R Us and the continued high street struggle this festive season with a tranche of new in-house games and pre-school SKUs.

Amid its collection of big name brands this year, including WowWee’s Fingerlings, LOL Surprise, Pikmi Pops and Hatchimals and a number of Tesco exclusives – including a LEGO Movie Unikitty range and LEGO City Arctic Mobile, Tesco has detailed a ‘major drive for its in-house range,’ Carousel.

Previously, the brand has had a large presence across the pre-school sector, this year introducing the Carousel Transporter with 14 Cars (£30) and Carousel 60-piece Wooden Train Set (£15), but this year has leapt into the gaming category with the winter launch of 16 new titles.

Among them is the Carousel Pet Mate Chess Set for £12, Carousel Safari Sam, Carousel Tumble Tower (£7) and more.

“We have always had our own ranges but historically they have always flown somewhat under the radar compared the big brands we have in store, but this year, we are going big on games with 16 new SKUs, and we feel its really time to start shouting about that,” Sam Pettit, product developer and toys and games buyer at Tesco told ToyNews.

Outside of its home brand range and Tesco has billed girls’ collectables as its big money maker for the festive season, listing Zuru’s Oosh Slime, Spin Master’s Hatchimals Colleggtibles 2pk and Nest, MGA’s LOL Surprise and Surprise Pets among its predicted top sellers for Christmas.

Disney’s Doorables, Moose’s Pikmi Pops and Party Pop Teenies also featured.

“Since Shopkins, girls’ collectables have just exploded. This is our biggest selection of girls’ collectables to date and it will be a big sector for us this Christmas,” Pettit continued.

Pettit was part of the team hosting this year’s Tesco Christmas in July at London’s OXO Building, showcasing a catalogue of products across toys, gifting, food and drink this week.

‘This year, we are really responding to consumer demand, not only in the products we are delivering but the massive shift in opinion on sustainability of the products we supply,” she said.

“All of the Carousel products are sustainably sourced and FSC certified and Tesco is placing a lot of emphasis on sustainability from its packaging to its food products. It’s such an important topic and – being the first grocer to introduce the plastic bag charge – we are leading that from the front.”

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of Licensing.biz and ToyNews. Hutchins has worked his way up from Staff Writer to the position of Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both ToyNews and Licensing.biz, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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