I have not been able to blog as frequently this week because I have been here in Scottsdale Arizona for the 2011 PlayCon. It has been a great week offering the moonscape beauty of Arizona's red rocks and the warmth of a toy industry crowd that is relaxed and happy. I have been coming to this event for more years than I can remember and this is, if not the best PlayCon, certainly one of the best.
There are about 130 people in attendance and, though that is a nice crowd, I am always surprised that there are not more of us in attendance. After all, this is probably the best networking event in the toy industry. The industry's leaders are here, they are relaxed and they are ready to talk. In addition, the sessions run from the inspirational to the practical. I have been particulalry impressed with the breakout sessions that have provided invaluable information. Yesterday I heard excellent discussions on: The current situation in China as well as on other parts of the world providing OEM manufacturing to the toy industry; how to sell toys in other countries and invaluable data on 2010 industry sales provided by NPD.
There is plenty more today. I am particularly looking forward to hearing about the retail landscape from Karen Dodge, Senior Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer of Toys R Us; Kathleen Campisano, Vice President Barnes & Noble; Julia Fitzgerald, Chief Marketing Officer Toys & Seasonal Sears Holdings; Lindsay Gaskins, President & CEO Marbles and Bob Wann, CEO , Patch Products.
There has been plenty more and if you would like to see the program click here.
If you are with me here in Scottsdale, see you later this morning. If you are not, see you next year.