10-13 Jan, Hong Kong – First market of the year (sort of). It was our first time at the Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair / Hong Kong Licensing Show. Didn’t quite know what to expect. The show itself was huge with 4 exhibits housed under one gargantuan convention centre.
The Toy Fair itself was mainly OEM exhibitors. It’s less of a show by toy makers (or inventors) than it is for manufacturers. Over 90% of toys in the world are made in China, and those guys were all there. As a result, it didn’t quite work for my purpose as I was hoping to see some new ideas, innovation and products in toy and game design that could inspire new show concepts, or speak with some toy companies to explore opportunities in show development. There was a bit of that, but overall not that productive. I may check out the New York Toy Fair and Tokyo Toy Show in the future, but until we have our own toys and need to find manufacturers, the show in Hong Kong doesn’t seem to be too relevant.
The Licensing Show, which was happening in the same convention centre, is smaller than the Toy Fair but still a decent collection of licensee booths and IP owners. Jeong did most of the work here, chatting up folks of all types and looking to get some business exploration going. It definitely felt like a good place to have a presence some day when our IP library is bigger.
The shows aside, I also squeezed in a trip into Shenzhen (the Chinese border) to meet with some partners from Guangzhou, and we had lunch with Cartoon Network Asia on the last day before heading home on what was a terrible flight on Jetstar. But it’s budget travel, so I’ll bite my tongue on that one.