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“The fair is growing and proving to be vital for the toy industry"

Interview to Steve Pasierb, Toy Industry Association President

  • Key4Communications

The Toy Industry Association (TIA) is a registered non-profit organization responsible for representing all the companies participating in the creation of entertainment for young people from all ages, having already 750 members. Steve Pasierb, president of the Association, tells us in this interview, a few months before New York Toy Fair 2016, what's new in the event and what are the forecast of the industry.

- A few months after the New York Toy Fair 2016, what are the main new features of the event compared to previous years?  
The fair annually attracts nearly 30,000 professionals from over 100 countries, with the aim of showing the news from over 1,000 exhibitors. This year, as new, we have partnered with Leftfield Media to launch a consumer-facing event called Fair Play, to be held from 13 to 14 February at the Javits Center North. This event is very exciting and unique for fans to touch, feel and interact with their favorite toys, games and entertainment brands in an environment suitable for families opportunity. They may even get to see some revelations of new toys and exclusive shows.

- What are the goals you have set for Toy Fair 2016?
Year after year, this fair keeps growing and showing that it's vital for the toy industry. This motivates us to innovate and help with the needs of professionals involved with the toy. We are planning our activities for 2016 that will feature seminars and special events that enrich the experience of attending this event.

- Why should international visitors attend Toy Fair?
It's the key point of access to the US market. Also in this event new toys that are not shown in any other contest of toys worldwide are revealed. It's an event of "compulsory attendance" for anyone interested in the global toy industry and interested in seeing all the innovative toys originating in North America.

Also, it said by international guests, our event is especially unique for its good atmosphere. Walking through the halls, you'll find passionate exhibitors-from startups to multinational companies who truly love what they do and are excited to bring joy to children of all ages.

- How is the U.S. toy market evolving?
It's an exciting time for the toy industry in the United States now. After several years, we have witnessed a rise of 4% in sales of toys in the United States in 2014, and this year is expected to end with an even higher note with the NPD Group predicting growth of 6.2%. The toy industry has grown 6.5% in the first half of 2015, NPD reported gains in all categories.

- How will the toy industry evolve next year?
The toy industry will continue to face some challenges, including the “kids getting older younger” phenomenon and ongoing competition from tablet-based and mobile play. So, toy companies are learning from consumers to position their products and combine with technology.

The full interview can be found in the December edition of Juguetes B2B magazine number 216.

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