A successful Spielwarenmesse encourages the toy business


There were great expectations for the 2023 edition of the Spielwarenmesse, the largest and most representative toy fair in the world, after a gap of three long years when the event was cancelled due to the pandemic, and they were met, or even exceeded: although 700 exhibitors were missing as compared with the 2019 show – 2,100 companies from 69 countries participated this year – and visitors dropped by 8% to 58,000 from 128 countries, the German toy exhibition, held for the 72nd time in Nuremberg (February 1-6), was considered a real success by anybody concerned. It is obvious that the war in Ukraine and the compulsory visa for Chinese visitors kept both exhibitors and visitors from several territories away. On the other hand, attendance from the US toy market was higher than ever, growing by almost 10%. Since most international toy markets registered turnover decreases in 2022, the positive feeling that was manifest in the Nuremberg fair halls pointed to better results in 2023.

All the leading companies in the international toy business were present. New products and concepts abounded. A significant shift toward sustainability was on the forefront everywhere. The Toys Go Green area enjoyed great acceptance with its presentation of the sustainability theme in four sections. There was strong focus on one of the three trends selected by the Spielwarenmesse together with the international TrendCommittee, namely Meta Toys, which opens new technological horizons for the toy business. The other trends were Discovery and Brands for Fans.

The usual itinerary through the halls underwent some changes as a few major companies were moved to different locations but those exhibitors eventually expressed satisfaction with the new placement. A survey revealed that 95% of exhibitors rated participation in the event as important or very important, and 92% declared themselves satisfied or very satisfied with the way it went. Christian Ulrich, Spokesperson of the Executive Board at Spielwarenmesse eG, announced that 83% of the exhibitors were already making plans to take part again.

On January 31st, during the Spielwarenmesse Press Preview, six products received the coveted Toy Award: among them, there were EverEarth 7 in 1 Space Activity Cube by Ever Earth Europe (Baby & Infant Category, 0-3 years) and Yummy Bear Scale by Topbright (Preschool Category, 3-6 years). Paw Patrol AR Tattoo & Stickers by Holo Toyz was awarded a Toy Award for the Startup Category. Among the Soft Toys, Wooden Toys and Educational Toys areas, we met a broad selection of products relating to babies and infants. We noticed Montessori-inspired articles for the children’s room, extended employment of eco-friendly materials, wooden outdoor play equipment. Baby and infant toys were exhibited in several other halls of the Spielwarenmesse.

The next Spielwarenmesse’s dates will be announced within the end of February.


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Kind + Jugend, the world’s largest trade fair for premium baby and toddler products organised by Koelnmesse, will make its Asean debut from 30 March to 2 April 2022 at BITEC, Bangkok, Thailand.

Kind + Jugend Asean aims to be the meeting place for leading global brands from the baby and toddler outfitting industry to gather, inspire and do business in the region. This inaugural event, which is part of Koelnmesse’s globalisation strategy for its baby and kids’ portfolio, is strongly supported by the Thai Toy and Children Product Trade Association, the Asia Toy & Play Association, the Thai Chamber of Commerce and the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau.
“We are delighted that Kind + Jugend is finally expanding its reach to Asean. Our members are excited and ready to support the show. In additon, the association is looking forward to collaborate in launching the first “Kind + Jugend Asean design award”, which will bring new impules and innovations to the industry.” said president of the Thai Toy and Children Product Trade Association, Mrs. Uraiwan Bunnag.

“As a long-time partner of Koelnmesse in Thailand, we are pleased to throw our weight behind Kind + Jugend Asean right from its inaugural edition in 2022. The Thai Chamber of Commerce recognises that the maternity & baby products market in the region is rapidly growing, and deserves a dedicated and professional industry platform,” shared Mr. Sanan Angubolkul, chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce and Board of Trade of Thailand.

“With global trade fair activities beginning to restart post-Covid, we see this as the opportune time to bring the globally recognised brand of Kind + Jugend to Thailand. Over the past 20 years, Koelnmesse has built a solid foundation in Thailand, and has become one of the largest trade fair organisers in Southeast Asia. We are counting on our strong local and regional connections to unite the industry at the event,” commented Mr. Mathias Kuepper, Managing Director of Koelnmesse Singapore, who runs the company’s business in the region.

Where the industry is booming

Thailand, being the key gateway into Southeast Asia, is a promising market with great social and economic development, and a robust post-Covid recovery plan. Coupled with a demographical shift from a low-income to higher-income country in less than a generation, parents are increasingly sophisticated when selecting products for their children, leading to an increase in demand for high-quality mother and baby products. This market sector has seen a 10 per cent average annual retail growth over the past decade and is set to expand even more in the years to come.

The first edition of Kind + Jugend Asean is expecting local and international exhibitors from all over the world to participate and network. The event also aims to attract over 3,000 trade visitors from Thailand and the region, including wholesalers, importers, distributors, stand-alone shops, modern trade, e-commerce, schools, hospitals, and childcare centres.

Attendees will also be able to enjoy the perks of supporting programmes such as business matching, workshops and academic conferences. One of the special highlights is the “Kind & Jugend Asean design award”, which will be presented annually in collaboration with the Thai Toy and Children Product Trade Association to ground-breaking innovators in the industry.

Kind + Jugend Asean will be held from 30 March – 2 April 2022. For more information about the event, visit www.kindundjugend.asia.