In a release issued this week, the Toy Association announced that it will not be presenting the highly anticipated annual event next month at Manhattan’s Javits Center.
A Toy Association industry gathering set for Feb. 19-22, 2022, at the Javits Center was expected to welcome toymakers, inventors, retail buyers, and other industry stakeholders.
As a result of the ongoing pandemic, there has been a pullout of several major companies, including Hasbro, Walmart, Target, and Amazon. The COVID crisis has closed Toy Fair New York for the second consecutive year.
According to Steve Pasierb, the president and CEO of The Toy Association, typically around 1,000 toy makers attend the event, but this year that number was only around 700.
Steve Pasierb, president of the Toy Association, said that one key reason for the decision was “the balance of some 700 remaining committed toy manufacturers saying they need and want Toy Fair to build their businesses–weighing that against those departing and seriously on the fence–and needing to provide sufficient quantity and quality across the retail buying community.”
Each year, the Toy Fair attracts about 40 publishers and exhibitors. Toy retailers, special markets buyers, and national retailers are shown a large variety of front and backlist titles, many of which are franchise-based, bestselling, licensed, novelty, or book-plus titles. In addition to meeting with retailers, IP owners, and other trade partners, many walk the show looking for trends, new technology, and licensing and promotional opportunities. In addition to toys, there are also book-related products and a bookstore-friendly sideline.
All toy fans should be sad to hear this news, however we hope to see a revival of the toy fair in 2023.
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