Mindful play and inclusive toys make headlines at Toy Fair 2020
Toy Fair 2021 to return 19th-21st January at Olympia, London
23rd January 2020, London: Top retailers, inventors and exhibitors flooded into Olympia, London on Tuesday for the 67th annual Toy Fair. Thousands of new products were unveiled by more than 260 exhibiting companies, with mindful play and inclusive ranges inspiring retail for the year ahead with visitors such as Sainsbury’s Argos, Debenhams, Boots, Asda, Harrods, John Lewis, House of Fraser and The Entertainer to name a few.
The British Toy & Hobby Association (BTHA) and the NPD Group opened the show by revealing the 2019 market figures for the UK toy industry. In line with other sectors, the UK market reported a decline in year on year sales. However, the UK remains the largest toy market in Europe, with over 32,000 new products launched and total sales of £3.2 billion. Collectibles and films drove the market, making up 21% and 11% of all toys sold respectively.
As the UK’s biggest toy, games and hobby trade show, Toy Fair 2020 sets the tone for the year ahead in the toy industry. Thousands of toys were showcased, supplemented by expert insight into the biggest themes and trends. Hundreds of buyers and press had the opportunity to see and get hands on with the products first-hand.
Wednesday also saw the launch of Toy Fair 2020’s brand-new “Influencer Day”. The day featured exclusive talks, tours and events for influencers to take part in, supported by Toy Fair exhibitors. Armed with videographers and smartphones, the influencers gave their followers a taste of what would be hitting the shelves later this year.
Across all three days, Toy Fair newcomers joined seasoned exhibitors on the airwaves of Toy Fair TV. Hosted by Gavin Inskip and Sara Damergi, the team ensured the hottest toy news, launches and interviews were beamed on screens throughout Olympia.
Toy Fair’s Hero Toys proved to be a hit yet again at Toy Fair 2020, with the best of the best competing for a spot on the coveted list. Judged by an independent panel of retailers and industry experts, the top 25 toys were predicted to succeed based on innovation and creativity. Toys from Hornby, Leapfrog, LEGO and Ridley Games were among the highlights.
“It’s genuinely a delight to see how everything comes together every year at Toy Fair,” commented Majen Immink, Director of Fairs and Special Events at the BTHA. “From the organisation and cooperation across the industry, to the continued creativity and drive shown by inventors and exhibitors alike. What a year. See you all at Toy Fair 2021!”
The BTHA, organisers of Toy Fair, announced that Toy fair 2021 will again return to Olympia London, in the Grand and National Hall, running from 19th-21st January. Applications for Toy Fair 2021 are now open at www.toyfair.co.uk.
Toy Fair testimonials
Michael Fulton, Bird
“This was our first Toy Fair and we’ve been blown away by the quality of not only the delegates, but the event on the whole. We’ve had a number of fantastic leads with some of the country’s best known retailers. We’re very excited about bringing the Birdie to the UK.”
James Brennan, Canal Toys UK
“London Toy Fair 2020 has been our biggest and best yet. We have debuted many new lines and a brand new stand that we hope everyone loves as much as we do! We have had plenty of extremely positive appointments and lots of newly discovered opportunities as people have walked by. A big thank you to the BTHA for putting on such a great event, we already cannot wait until next year!”
Shahbaz Khan, Clementoni
“We have had another good show. It has been hugely productive to meet with our customers, especially after a significant year of growth for the Clementoni business. We have exciting launches this year, including our 100% recycled materials range Play for Future, our Netflix licensed products and innovative STEM including Toy Fair Hero award winner Dynamix – all of which were positively received by visitors to the stand. Roll on 2020 and we look forward to returning in 2021!”
Judith Stark, Halilit
“Our new packaging on Halilit Music was really well received and our Toddler Tribute Band created a stir! We were kept busy throughout the show.”
Alex Molyneux, Hippychick
“Toy Fair is an extremely exciting platform to launch multiple new products at the beginning of the year for Hippychick. Yet again, the 2020 show has been an amazing opportunity to see our products tested, talked about, and broadcast to a huge number of important customers. Thank you Toy Fair!”
Gin Grewal, Intertek
“Intertek have attended the Toy Fair for many years now and have always enjoyed seeing the up and coming products brought into the industry as well as being part of the design process offering total quality and safety. Toy Fair has allowed us to assist many large brands in their testing requirements over the years as well as allowing us to join the journey of smaller start-up companies who continue to flourish in the industry, which is why we keep coming back!”
Sharon Keilthy, Jiminy Eco Toys
“So many toy buyers in such a short space of time! It’s been fantastic (and so fun!)”
Thomas Baker, Learning Resources
“Overall it was a positive show. A good mix of current and new customers visited our stand. We launched over 100 new products and based on the feedback, look forward to a strong 2020.”
Clive Robertson, Little Athlete Games
“What a fantastic event! A great way for us to introduce our product Snapfit to the industry in a fun, inviting environment alongside some phenomenal retailers, creating great memories from the week.”
Neil Shinner, Moose Europe
“It’s the first time Moose Toys has exhibited at Toy Fair and we’ve had an incredibly positive reception. As one of the fastest growing toy companies in the UK, we’re investing heavily into our UK business for 2020 and the Fair has been the best platform to showcase our innovative products across preschool to collectibles. From Kindi Kids winning Hero Toy status, to our Oh My Gif brand being named ‘one to watch’, we’re excited for the year ahead. And winning Best Stand Design of the show is a testament to the huge effort of the team – bring on 2020!”
Keith Finch, Paper Engine
“Toy Fair 2020 has been a brilliant launch platform for our new eco-friendly range of Build-Your-Own products. Having the opportunity to meet with retailers, demo our products and get such positive feedback has been invaluable. We’re very excited for the year ahead – to be coming away with a wealth of toy industry knowledge and boosted confidence as a fresh start-up.”
Patch Fordham, Patch Games
“This was a first for me, as a start-up I found the event an incredible insight into the industry, and gained fantastic contacts and networks I otherwise would not have been able to attain. All in all the event has been brilliant.”
Laura Neville, S C Brands
“This is our first experience exhibiting at the Toy Fair! It has been great to showcase our Miffy & Egmont ranges. We particularly appreciated all the exhibitor opportunities for us to be featured in, it really made us feel welcome and part of the show, plus the free massage in the garden was a great touch too!”
Hedley Barnes, Spin Master Toys
“We’ve had another fantastic Toy Fair catching up with all our customers, partners and industry friends. The highlight has to be from Tuesday being honoured as Global Supplier of the Year at the annual Toy Industry Awards. As a team, we are thrilled to have this recognition and it’s such a positive start to the year for us all. With many constructive dialogues having taken place throughout the week, we are ready to focus on fulfilling our discussions and look forward to a fun and productive year ahead.”
David Mordecai, Tobar
“Great show – we had a great reaction to our new lines and are looking forward to a successful year.”
Mary Wood, Tomy UK
“Seeing our brands presented in their best format, having positive feedback from our customers and feeling the power of a team pulling together are what makes London Toy Fair such an important date in our calendar. It’s hard work in the preparation but provides an invaluable start to the year….”
Brian McLaughlin, Toymaster
“After a challenging 2019, the Toy Fair has been a great opportunity for our Members to catch up with each other and see all the new products and ranges our Suppliers have on display. The independent sector is still strong and there is plenty of optimism for a good year in 2020.”
Gary Moore, Warcradle Studios
“London Toy Fair 2020 has been a great experience. Really informative and a perfect opportunity to reveal our new game Bill & Ted’s Riff In Time to the perfect audience.”
James Mountfield, Wild + Wolf
“This has been the first time we have presented Ridley’s and Petit Collage at London Toy Fair and we’ve had a brilliant show. The quality of the retailers that we’ve met has been incredible from Sainsbury’s/Argos through to Harrods, the show has been a great platform to launch our new Games, Toys and Puzzles for 2020. We’re going to be very busy this year thanks to London Toy Fair!”