“Toy Fair 2021 could end up being an actual order-writing show.”
As we all know only too well, the New York Toy Fair has been postponed. A Spring date is not yet finalized but anticipated.
On the surface, you might assume that a Spring date is anti-climactic. After all, the Fair has taken place in February for as long as most of us can recall. It has not, however, always been that way. According to toy historian, “The Toy Guy,” Chris Byrn, it used to take place in March and even April. And it used to run for weeks. I can recall staying two weeks to see all our customers (not as much fun as it sounds).
This Toy Fair, however, may be a highly important one, and here is why: The absence of buyer trips to Hong Kong and China plus the move to digital trade shows means that Toy Fair will be most American retailers’ first opportunity to see new product.
Not only that, but the product will be further along in development in the Spring than it would have been in October in Dallas or January in Hong Kong. As a result, rather than prototypes, retailers will likely see finished products.
The bottom line, at least for some, Toy Fair 2021 could end up being an actual order-writing show. How the factories manage the late demand will be a whole other matter.