Tag Archives: Feature

Putting neutral into gear: What’s the toy industry doing for gender inclusivity?

After some 60 years of dominating the fashion doll market with its Barbie brand – not without its fair share of controversies just as much as its successes – Mattel finally drew a firm line in the sand on the topic of gendered play last month, when it launched Creatable …

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Putting the magic into Brighton: “We have to deliver the flipping best customer service we can”

Plucked straight from the cobbled streets of Diagon Alley and landed halfway up Brighton’s Trafalgar St., one of the city’s many centralised shopping destinations, resides Oliver’s Brighton, an olde world trinket store, dedicated to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter franchise. Your guide among its shelves upon shelves of officially …

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Bandai Namco talks plans for a whole new kind of Tori

It was at the height of May that Bandai Namco, the Japanese video games giant, detailed its intention to redefine the ‘toys-to-life’ sector with the announcement of Tori, a new platform that would combine physical toys with mobile app game play. While the UK was preoccupied with the spectacle of …

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A colour of magic: BBC Studios talks Bluey, Hey Duggee, His Dark Materials and Terry Pratchett

It’s with a great sense of betrayal to my own ambitions of a writing career that, sat opposite Rikesh Desai, BBC Studios’ licensing director, I am forced to admit to having read only one book by Terry Pratchett in my lifetime. Of the ‘at least 32 titles’ that the treasured …

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The French connection: How Le Toy Van is getting it right in pre-school

Le Toy Van enjoys that it’s a small company based in the British county of Surrey, but competing on a global scale with some of the biggest names in the toy industry today. Almost 25 years into its gig, it very much plans on keeping things that way. There’s no …

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Confessions of a game designer: An interview with the prolific Rustan Hakansson

From playing, to organising major tournaments, to working with big distributors and publishers, as well as a stint with the Board Game Geek team, before turning pro at game design in more recent years, the Swedish board gaming expert, Rustan Hakansson’s knowledge of the sector spans just about every aspect …

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How the West was won: Japanese art and its impact on kids’ entertainment

Take a look at some of the highest performing animation or properties within the children’s space today and you’ll notice the creeping influence of Eastern culture infiltrating the style and look of so much we experience here in the West. Spin Master’s Bakugan – to name just one example – …

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BLE 2019: Exploring the special relationship between toys and licensing

It’s a well established fact that the UK licensing industry is the second largest in the world, and the biggest in the Europe, with a value of $14.58bn in 2018, according to the latest figures from the global licensing industry body, Licensing International. That itself is a growth of 3.9 …

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Chuggington: “With Alpha Group we’re bringing the series to life like never before”

Chuggington is making its comeback in 2020 as the brand and children’s TV series celebrates its tenth anniversary and its returning sixth series with an all guns blazing licensed product programme, kicking off with master toy partner, Alpha Group. Having acquired the Chuggington brand from Ludorum in December last year, …

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Bossing it… with Skyrocket UK’s Amy Saunders

Each month, ToyNews selects a toy industry bigwig to put through the paces with a series of prying, probing and some might say, impertinent, questions. This month: Skyrocket UK’s Amy Saunders You’ve held various roles in the toy industry and I’ve always known you as Amy from Bandai… how did …

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