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The global toy show

In a little under two months time, the toy trade will descend on Nuremberg for the 2014 trade show. Tom Roberts reports.


he 2014 Nuremberg Toy Fair sold out last month; approximately 2,800 exhibitors from 60 countries will be showing their products to an expected 75,000 visitors from across the globe at the show next year. Ernst Kick,

Spielwarenmesse eG’s CEO, commented: “Once a year, Nuremberg is the brain pool of the global toy industry, since all the CEOs come to the show and all of the key decision makers are gathered in one place. I still find it quite amazing to watch companies arrive at the show with their big teams; it shows how important the show is and what an opportunity it presents for meeting key customers from all around the world, and that to be well prepared for the flux of existing and new customers they have to gather their worldwide sales team at the show.”

I was told that some global players on the toy scene even use the Nuremberg show as a training ground for their sales teams. Ernst explained: “They travel here with something like 300 employees from up to 60 countries, and it really pays off as a learning experience because at no other toy trade show do so many companies make such impressive displays of their products as they do here. And that suits our aim to offer the best range of toys in the world. We are always looking for manufacturers with brilliant ideas and high- quality products and each year we welcome new exhibitors to Nuremberg. So, for companies who may have missed out this time, there is always a chance to join us next time.” There are also some big changes happening at

next year’s show 2014’s show and Ernst outlined some of the major ones: “We have expanded the product group of baby and infant articles, and manufacturers will display their baby products in Hall 2, and in additional spaces in Hall 1 and Hall 2; trade fairs always aim to mirror the markets they cover, and we have taken into account the major growth potential of this segment. The expansion of the offerings on show for the little ones enlarges our coverage in Nuremberg to products and leisure activities for those aged 0–99 years. Furthermore, Festive products, Fireworks and Carnival Articles will grow and cover all of Hall 9. School Products, Stationery and Creative Design are also all moving into Hall 4, since it fits perfectly with the range of educational toys already in place there.”

Talking trends Reported recently on Toy World’s website, Spielwarenmesse has revealed the trends it

38 Toyworld The Trend Gallery

believes will be most prevalent through 2014, and the following categories will be exhibited in the Trend Gallery (a render of which is displayed on this page) at next year’s Nuremberg Toy Fair. Product displays are given a platform next to presentations and guided tours at the 1,000m² Trend Gallery. From Wednesday to Sunday, the trend experts Reyne Rice (USA) and Dr Maria Costa (Spain) will detail the individual trend segments and introduce new products. For an overview of the global toy trends,

Spielwarenmesse eG created an international Trend Committee. These trends scouts have reported on the latest trends from the industry from all around the world, and have already spotted four key trends. They are as follows:

Fit4Life: Toys that promote life skills Parents are increasingly focused on the learning effect during play and wish to promote life skills. Through practical methods such as gardening, sewing, handicrafts, cooking and pretending to be doctors, these toys impart important skills and prepare children for life.

Retromania: Retro toys and retro licences Toys and heroes that grown-ups know from their own childhood are experiencing a revival, and parents are eager to share these experiences with their children by purchasing the same toy for them. New retro toys are often equipped with plenty of smart features.

Mini is King: Mini toy versions With increasing urbanisation, our living space is becoming smaller while mobility is growing. This development also presents particular challenges in respect of products, and games in particular.

Ernst Kick CEO, Spielwarenmesse eG

More often than not, they have to be scaled down to accommodate a growing demand for mobility and transportability.

TechToys: Technology teams up with tradition The boundary between the real and virtual worlds is becoming ever more blurred, opening up new possibilities for the toy industry. Traditional games and digital domains are producing exciting game combinations which appeal to the young and old. Ernst observed that “everybody coming to a

trade fair wants to find out about trends. Our Trend Gallery in Hall 3A showcases trends from the global toy industry, brought together by international toy experts. We are very pleased to have John Baulch, Toy World’s publisher, join us on the Trend Committee, and his role has been to scout out the latest developments in the UK’s toy market. In addition to the Trend Gallery, the Toy Award and the New Exhibitor Center complement many other new products. And all retailers wishing to expand their knowledge at this year’s show can do so at our Global Toy Conference; this will now be held on Saturday and those attending can also book themselves on to individual modules.” In addition to the Trend Gallery, visitors will find

the Toy Award and Toy Business Forum in Hall 3A too; the show has conviniently placed its three pillars – trends, novelties and knowledge – under one roof in the new hall. Finally, the Toy World team will be at the show,

so if you see any of us make sure to stop and say hello. Over the following pages you’ll find a selection of the products being exhibited at next year’s Nuremberg Toy Fair.

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