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January 24, 2024
Playmobil has announced a host of new products and ranges as it heads into its 50th anniversary year, including its partnerships with Asterix, Porsche and Disney. The “Miraculous: Paris Fashion Show” set (pictured) was named as a winner of a Toy Fair 2024 Hero Toy award at the London Toy Fair this week. Sets for younger audiences from IP such as Disney’s Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Tigger and Piglet are also due to drop in 2024, along with “Miraculous Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir.”
The company also announced it will be the first major toy manufacturer worldwide to use plant-based plastic in its toddler portfolio. The news is part of a re-brand for the Playmobil 1.2.3 line, now known as Playmobil Junior. The new plant-based plastics consist of food and paper production residue, which can be recycled according to the mass balance approach used in the circular economy.
“After successfully establishing several classic product lines to now use recycled and bio-based plastics, converting the production of our toddler line is another important step for our ambitious sustainability agenda,” says Bahri Kurter, chief executive officer, Playmobil.
Earlier this month, Danish design company, Boyhood, announced it would introduce the Playmobil man and woman as wooden figures.
Disney Winnie the Pooh Playmobil Junior range, Playmobil, at London Toy Fair
The LEGO Group confirmed its commitment to drive innovation and champion play as a superpower with new products, play experiences and partnerships, including announcing “Peppa Pig” as the latest character to join the company’s product portfolio.
Data from Circana has revealed the LEGO Group has retained its position as the U.K.’s No. 1 toy manufacturer for the ninth year running, and 2023 saw the company activate sustainability and social initiatives designed to have a positive impact on the futures of the builders of tomorrow, something that will continue to be a focus this year. As part of its Build to Give initiative, the company has donated nearly two million LEGO sets globally to children in need of play. Last year also saw the company begin its rollout of new paper-based bags, verified as recyclable, as it phases out single-use plastic in LEGO boxes.
“2023 will be a hard year to top,” says Isabel Graham, head of marketing, the LEGO Group UK and Ireland. “We took children’s limitless creativity and used it to inspire the launch of LEGO DREAMZzz; we invited people around the world to build hearts and help #BuildToGive and encouraged families to prioritize play on World Play Day. But then I look around at the incredibly strong portfolio that we are showcasing at Toy Fair and think ahead to what’s coming, and I’m confident fans won’t be disappointed.”
LEGO DREAMZzz product display, LEGO, at London Toy Fair
Ravensburger previewed Disney Lorcana TCG 2024 lineup earlier this month and used Toy Fair to showcase the range, which spans gameplay, trading and collectibles.
It was announced that a “Star Wars” licensed edition of the award-winning marble run, GraviTrax, will hit the shelves in the form of a “Star Wars” Action-Set Death Star.
The company also used the show to welcome new artists, new licenses and new themes to its jigsaw offering.
Star Wars Action-Set Death Star GraviTrax, Ravensburger, at London Toy Fair
Toy company, TOMY International, announced several new lines and ranges at the show, including several licensed products, such as “Pop Up Bluey.”
After featuring on “Dragons’ Den” last year, Joanna Proud, founder, Mood Bears, attended the show with dragon and entrepreneur, Touker Suleyman, to outline the brand’s plans for 2024.
Toy Fair Organizers of the Toy Fair, The British Toy and Hobby Association (BTHA), used the opening morning of the show to reveal its list of 27 Hero Toys for 2024, with affordability being a key theme among the finalists, with 15 out of the 27 Hero Toys priced under £25.
The 2024 lineup showcased a range of categories, including games and puzzles, plush and collectibles, sectors which all saw growth throughout 2023.
Nostalgia also featured heavily on the list, in products such as Rubik’s 50th Anniversary Retro Cube by John Adams Leisure and the Paddington in a Phone box Soft Toy by Rainbow Designs.
“We are thrilled with the breadth and quality of this year’s entries,” says Rebecca Deeming, communications and events manager, BTHA. “The Hero Toys winners represent a fantastic cross-section of the toy industry, showcasing some of the best new toys launching in 2024.
“Toys that offer multigenerational play have always been popular with families, as they allow for children to bond and learn with their parents and grandparents. At a time when cost is a continuing concern for many households in the U.K., toys that can bring a family together for entertainment and offer a cost-effective way to make memories, have fun and learn together are becoming more popular, and many of this year’s selection of Hero Toys offer this.”
Elsewhere on the show floor, there was a meet and greet with contestants from the second series of game show, “The Traitors,” on the Vivid Goliath stand, while comedian, Michael McIntyre, visited the Funko stand to unveil his new Funko Pop! offering.
Radio host and board game inventor, Matt Edmondson, was on the Asmodee UK stand throughout the week, challenging visors (and members of the License Global editorial team) to beat him at his own board games.
TV presenter, Stephen Mulhern, Big Sky Games business partner, was on the stand showcasing some of his magic skills and Radio presenter, James O’Brien, demonstrated the company’s Mystery Hour Board game. There were also speed demos celebrating 40 years of the Rubiks Cube on the John Adams Leisure Stand.
Watch: License Global at London Toy Fair 2024.
London Toy Fair is running at Olympia, London, through Jan. 25. Read License Global’s trends from London Toy Fair 2024 here.
Read more about:Toy FairPlaymobilMiraculous Tales of Ladybug & Cat NoirMiraculousLEGORavensburgerTomyVividVivid Toy GroupFunkoAsmodeeRubik'sU.K.EuropeGlobalLicense Global OriginalWinnie the PoohMickey MouseMinnie MousePorscheAsterixDisneyThe Walt Disney Company
Senior Digital Editor U.K. & EMEA, License Global
Ian joined the License Global editorial team in May 2022 as digital editor for the U.K. and EMEA, becoming Senior Digital Editor in April 2023.
Ian is a huge fan of sports and entertainment brands and, as a father, toys and kids' brands are a large part of his life!
He has been at Informa (formerly UBM) since 2018, where he was previously the editor of SHP, a B2B digital publication aimed at health & safety professionals.
Ian studied journalism at university before spending seven years in online fantasy gaming. Prior to moving to Informa, Ian worked in B2B trade print media, in the automotive sector, working on various publications aimed at independent automotive technicians and parts distributors.
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