With shipping from China reaching a crisis point that has seen costs skyrocket to all time highs amid a shortage of containers within the global supply chain, the UK’s independent toy retailer, The Entertainer is making its message to the consumer clear.
Costs, shortages, and delays have hamstrung companies across the industries worldwide in recent months, and analysts suggest that the crisis is likely to continue into 2023, with rumbles of legal redress against shipping companies, and allegations of ‘cartel action regarding freight rates’ thrown in.
And while the world reels from the activity – brought on by a pandemic that saw shipping ports operating at reduced staff levels, causing delays on shipments, coupled with a buying boom from consumers spending online – the high street toy retailer The Entertainer is urging its customers to complete their Christmas shopping early once again this year, in order to avoid disappointment.
The call echoes those made by the retailer at the mid point of 2020, when online shopping surged in the midst of lockdowns and restrictions. Now, however, with all remaining restrictions due to be lifted across England by next week and as The Entertainer encourages families to make Christmas 2021 ‘better than ever’, it issues the warning to get those orders in early, as the toy industry navigates its latest logistical headache.
Gary Grant, founder and executive chairman of The Entertainment issued the call out to shoppers this week.
“There are lots of brands that we’re excited about for Christmas 2021, including PAW Patrol, following the movie this summer, and CoComelon, Super Mario, LOL Surprise, Barbie, and Bluey,” he said.
“But the shipping crisis in China is causing uncertainty as to what will be available and when. So above all, we urge our customers to shop early for Christmas this year to avoid disappointment.”
Earlier this month, the vice president of the Taiwanese branch of DB Schenker, a major player in supply chain management and logistics solutions said that global shipping reliability was at an ‘historic low.’
Antoine Bouin of Schenker Taiwan, said: “Empty container shortages are worsened by port congestion in Europe and the US, and recently, by China’s Yantian port backlog. Port congestion, berthing delays, flow imbalances and the slow return of empty containers have caused shipping lines to skip some of their regular trips and pushed global shipping reliability to an historic low.”