Littlest Pet Shop, one of the most well-known collectible toy brands in history, will be marking its long-anticipated return to retail with an immersive digital play experience on the global immersive platform for communication and connection – Roblox. The brand-new pet simulation experience, which will launch worldwide in December 2023, is a joint collaboration between Littlest Pet Shop Master Toy licensee, Basic Fun!, a leading global marketer of toys and consumer products, Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ: HAS), a leading toy and game company, and Suit Up Games, a Roblox development studio specializing in high-engagement branded experiences for young audiences.
WildBrain CPLG, a world-leading entertainment, sport and brand licensing agency, and SEGA of America, Inc (“SEGA”), have built on the ever-growing global fandom of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise with another wave of new licensing partnerships for the hit Netflix series, Sonic Prime. The new partners follow the recent launch of Sonic Prime’s highly anticipated second season on Netflix July 2023, which launched as a top-ten show in 25 countries worldwide and saw 14.7 million hours viewed in its first two weeks. Maarten Weck, EVP & MD at WildBrain CPLG, said: “Sonic the Hedgehog is one of the hottest entertainment brands in the world today, and its popularity amongst global audiences continues to soar. For our hugely popular Netflix series, Sonic Prime, we’ve signed another wave of cross-category licensing deals, in collaboration with SEGA, building on the expansive slate announced earlier this year. The innovative and creative range of products for Sonic Prime has already begun to delight fans at retail, and there are many more to come this fall and winter and into 2024.”
Spin Master’s three founders, Anton Rabie, Ronnen Harary and Ben Varadi are being inducted into the US Toy Association Hall of Fame at the end of September 2023, and will be the first founders of a Canadian company to receive this incredible honor. Fresh from graduating Western University, they first established their foothold in the toy manufacturing industry with a novel introduction called Earth Buddy. With $10,000 of their own money they made the item and with its initial success started a now almost 30-year history of producing hit toys including Bakugan, PAW Patrol and Hatchimals. The company now includes three creative centers spanning toys, entertainment and digital games and is one of the top 5 toy manufacturers globally.
Finalists for the prestigious 2023 TAGIE Awards have been announced by People of Play (POP). The TAGIEs, now in its 16th year, honor the most innovative inventors, designers, suppliers, retailers, marketers and PR teams in the toy and game industry. Public voting starts Thursday, September 21 and ends on October 20, 2023. Visit the TAGIE Awards 2023 Finalist page to learn about the finalists and cast your vote. Winners in nine categories will receive their TAGIE Awards 2023 trophies on November 3, 2023, in front of a live audience of their peers at Joe’s Live Concert Venue.
Being part of a military family can be an adventure, but at times, it can also feel isolating. Both children and grown-ups can experience feelings of loneliness, and the unique circumstances of military life, such as being far away from relatives or friends, frequent changes to routine, or moving to new places can make those feelings more intense. For over 15 years, Sesame Street for Military Families has helped children and families in the military community navigate challenges. When a parent serves, the whole family serves as well, and that’s something military kids can be proud of.
Jada Toys, one of the world’s leading toy and collectible companies, has announced a new licensing partnership with Fred Rogers Productions, the iconic children’s media company behind multiple well-loved, Emmy-winning PBS KIDS series, to create and distribute consumer products based on its hit preschool series, Donkey Hodie. This will be the first time Donkey Hodie inspired toys will be available for retail purchase. The initial Donkey Hodie toys to be available for young viewers and their families starting in fall of 2023 on Amazon include a 14-inch Donkey Hodie plush and 16-inch Purple Panda plush. These first two plushies will be followed by four more items set to launch through 2023 into 2024. Among the additional products in the new lineup are figures, vehicles, and finger puppets.
Moonbug Entertainment, a subsidiary of Candle Media, has announced the launch of its Netflix preschool series Little Baby Bum Music Time and its corresponding new soundtrack, which will be available on all music streaming platforms. The Music Time series and soundtrack, which are the latest in a string of the franchise’s expansions including the recent launch of Baby Sensory content on YouTube (2M subscribers), the Audible podcast Time to Dream, and a Lullabies music collection, are also supported by a fully re-imagined look and a new curriculum developed in partnership with educational non-profit organization Peeple. Little Baby Bum, Moonbug Entertainment’s first-ever franchise acquisition, has more than 95 million worldwide subscribers on YouTube and has generated more than two billion views across its content so far this year.
Pudgy Penguins, the IP and brand development company behind the series of globally recognized characters, has announced that its line of Pudgy Toys is available in 2,000 Walmart stores nationwide. Pudgy Toys plushies and collectibles are now sold alongside legacy consumer brands, a testament to both the growing popularity of the character brand and its unique approach of developing community-driven and owned IP that leverages social media and blockchain technology. With this milestone collaboration, Pudgy Penguins, a brand that has already achieved $400M in digital collectible sales, is set to disrupt retail standards. This signals a transformative shift in IP development, as the industry moves to leverage a mix of community engagement, social media influence, and innovative blockchain-backed experiences. Since its launch, Pudgy Penguins has forged a unique path, blending traditional digital platforms with the new age of blockchain to offer consumers tailored interactive experiences.
Moose Toys, a leading innovator in the toy industry, today announced industry veteran Jeff Hurst joins the company as senior vice president, North American sales. He will be based out of the company’s U.S. operation in El Segundo, Calif., beginning in October. In this leadership position, Hurst is responsible for defining, leading and driving the execution of the North American strategic sales plan and annual goals for emerging and established markets. “I found this opportunity with Moose irresistible. My team and I are not just selling toys, we are selling Moose innovation and that is what ultimately attracted me to the company and this role,” said Hurst. “With their wildly creative original brands and impressive licensing portfolio, the stage is set for Moose’s next level growth. I look forward to expanding Moose’s already world-class sales team and contributing to the company’s continued success.”