Toys R Us is Back. Macy’s Projects a Billion Dollars in Sales
There is now a Toys R Us store within a store in all Macy’s locations. Great news for the American toy industry, which needs more retail outlets.
Toy Fair Moved to the Fall
After almost 120 years of a winter Toy Fair, the show is moving to the Fall. With Los Angeles toy meetings taking place two weeks prior and Toy Fest going national and taking place in the winter, Toy Fair will have some serious competition.
China Shut Down and Reopened
For all extents and purposes, China’s Zero Covid policy cut the country off from visitors. It also caused the closing of factories and ports. However, the government’s practice of limiting their citizens’ freedom of movement resulted in major protests across China in December. The government finally got the message and China is now open to business.
Container Prices Set New Highs and Lows
Container prices hit historic highs in the first and second quarters of the year. They took a dive, however, at the end of the year. Prices that at one time hovered around $20,000 are now under $2,000 (Drewry).
2022 felt like the 1980s, with double-digit increases in the cost of living. Toy companies had to take price increases, and Walmart said Yes. They are back to saying No again, so prices are stabilizing.
Bob Iger Returns to Disney
Bob Iger, the former Walt Disney Company CEO, left the company in 2020. His successor, Bob Chapek, seemed at times like the Captain of a sinking ship. In a coup d’etat, the Disney Board of Directors pushed Chapek out and pulled Iger back in. If history is a guide, Iger should be able to right the ship.
Record Setting Domestic Inventories
One of the reasons container prices dropped so dramatically in 2022 was the historically high levels of inventory sitting in domestic warehouses. Toy companies and retailers stocked up early due to fears that they would be unable to get their merchandise out of China. The result was a sharply reduced need for containers in the third and fourth quarters.
Brian Goldner, Hasbro CEO, Dies at the Age of 58
Brian Golders, a visionary leader, passed away this year. It was a blow to Hasbro, the toy industry, but above all to Brian’s family. He is missed.
The Original Mickey Mouse Enters the Public Domain
You probably never thought you would see the day when a major Disney character (Mickey Mouse, no less) entered the public domain. It’s not the Mickey we know today but the 1920s version. More significant characters will lose their protected status over the next few years.