UK market 'ripe' for new pre-school brand

NPD data shows sales of licensed toys for younger kids have fallen to a four-year low.
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The UK toy industry is ripe for a fresh pre-school licence, says retail sales tracker NPD.

Data shows that strong licences are beginning to slow, while newer brands like Mike the Knight “haven’t had time to take off yet”, and fewer licensed toys for younger kids have launched recently.

NPD data shows that sales of licensed toys for children up to three years old have fallen to a four-year low. Sales of those toys reached £45 million in the first half of 2012, compared to £69 million in H1 2008, £51 million in both H1 2009 and H1 2010, and £58 million in H1 2011.

NPD European analyst Frederique Tutt said: “Given the cyclic nature of the UK pre-school business, I think the market is ripe for something else to take over. I’d say we have the same phenomenon in the rest of Europe, since licences tend to be more and more global.

“The UK has the particularity however to be the birth country for many pre-school licences.”

The UK toy market is flat YOY (January-September 12th, 2012). The European market is down one per cent.

“Toys are proving their resilience,” added Tutt. “The industry is not crumbling or falling to pessimism.”

NPD: 01932 355 580

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