The Toy Industry Association's trend specialist Reyne Rice has named her properties to watch for this year and 2010.
A good mix of brands caught Rice's eye at last month's Licensing International in Las Vegas, ranging from pre-school property Waybuloo, through to current big sellers like Gormiti and Gogo's Crazy Bones, to video games IP like LittleBigPlanet.
"Some of the properties are new and engaging, others new and inspiring," Rice explained to Licensing.biz. "They all broke frame in some newer way, either through animation technique, through storyline or messaging or through lifestyle branding that provided a point of difference.
"The overall selection also represented a completely diverse group of licensees and licensors, some of whom are not the typical names that people are familiar with. I liked that diversity, because it signalled a shift, that not all of the new licensed properties were coming from the same entertainment studios, and not all of the master toy licensees were concentrated with the two global leaders.
"Creativity is bursting out all over, after being stifled too long by a stagnant economy, wary consumers and risk averse retailers."
The read the full feature and find out the properties that Rice has highlighted, click here.