Nursery Online - Latest News
Have you recovered yet?

Doing a trade show is always hard work (and very tiring for those of us stuck at Heathrow on the way out and Cologne/Bonn on the way back!). However, the overall sentiment from attendees was very positive.

Exhibitors, without exception felt it was all worthwhile, although one told me how daunted they were at the number of contacts they would need to follow up and sift through. Still, they were confident that they would achieve their goal of distributors in their target locations, and perhaps even more!

For those who were visiting, there was plenty to see. Now there are six halls, it took a lot of effort to ensure you had seen everything, and I felt it was a shame that several of the big name buyer s chose to go back on the Friday afternoon, thereby giving themselves just a day and a half to see everything. I’m sure they missed out. I found a number of small stands manned by enthusiastic individuals. And, although there were some strange offerings (there always is!) there were a number I would have thought were worth considering by retailers big and small. We’ll be featuring some of these in later issues.

As you will see from the report on the British Pavilion below, the British may be leaving the EU but they are certainly not leaving this European show. I can see us taking over most of the Hall 4.1 in the future! The key message is that exhibiting in the UK Pavilion works!

A lot of new products were introduced and I’m already seeing press releases on them. Some are in this newsletter, some will follow in coming weeks – but do let me know if you’d like them to go into our International newsletter in a couple of weeks. We have had wonderful feedback on the pre-show publicity we did for many exhibitors, so do follow this up. Tell me which newsletter you’d like to feature in and I’ll see what I can do.

And of course, if you really want to make a splash we have a couple of banner ads available for that…

- Cathy

PS: So, after all the excitement, it’s back to our normal Spotlights. Next up is Nappies, wipes, changing mats, & changing bags; indeed everything for the bottom of the market! (sorry!!) We need copy for this asap.

Then we’re looking at Keeping Baby Happy. There are a number of products to entertain baby – bouncy chairs, play mats, mobiles, rattles – too many to list. So if you think your product might fit this category then let’s show our retailers what a huge variety there is out there.

As usual, your contacts for ads and advertorials is Lyn on 01304 374169 or 07971 700979 or email on lyn@nursery-online.com or Gilly on sales@nursery-online.com

Instant Classics - Classic World arrives at Hippychick

Classic World have a straight forward philosophy, ‘Happy Playing, Happy Learning!’ Their commitment goes beyond just making great toys; they practice an environmentally safe production process and do more than their part in maintaining a safe and clean environment for children to grow up in.

Their bright, vibrant and educational toys help children develop a range of much needed motor and cognitive skills. From pull along toys to tool benches, the Classic World range has something for everyone this Christmas. Their rider/walker, a favourite in the Hippychick offices helps to develop balance and physical strength, two things that are imperative to little ones when learning to walk.

The shape sorter seat and abacus back also promote dexterity, problem solving and shape recognition – for an all in one walker it certainly ticks all the boxes!

For more information on the range please call Mike Bird on 01278 434440 or visit www.hippychick.com/classicworld


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Toys 'R' Us in the USA files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection

Suffering under the weight of a massive debt load at a time that sees more and more customers shopping online, the North American division of Toys 'R' Us has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in an attempt to restructure its debts. The future of nearly 1,600 stores and 64,000 employees is now uncertain.

The European division of Toys 'R' Us is not part of the proceedings at all, and the firm says that the events in the USA will not affect its European operations in any immediate way. Australia and Asia are also currently not affected.

A bankruptcy judge has approved a $2bn loan to shore up and stabilise the company, which has suffered greatly against larger rivals such as Amazon.

Dave Brandon, Chairman and CEO says: "Today marks the dawn of a new era at Toys R Us where we expect that the financial constraints that have held us back will be addressed in a lasting and effective way. Together with our investors, our objective is to work with our debt holders and other creditors to restructure the $5 billion of long-term debt on our balance sheet, which will provide us with greater financial flexibility to invest in our business, continue to improve the customer experience in our physical stores and online, and strengthen our competitive position in an increasingly challenging and rapidly changing retail marketplace worldwide. We are confident that these are the right steps to ensure that the iconic Toys R Us and Babies R Us brands live on for many generations."


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Lords and Dragons

The Baby Products Association certainly upped its game in Cologne this year, as the UK Pavilion at Kind+Jugend was not only bigger and better than ever before; with more participants and eye-catching branding; but also attracted attention from Lords and Dragons too.

Touker Suleyman of BBC television’s Dragon’s Den spent several days in the UK Pavilion supporting current business interests and exploring opportunities to support new UK innovations. Lord Digby Jones of Birmingham who is a chairman of a number of businesses including On Logistics which is the UK distributor for Apramo; and also served as the UK’s Minister of State for Trade & Investment from 2007 to 2008, spent a day visiting the UK Pavilion and expressed his admiration for the exhibition area saying: “It’s incredible to see so many British companies together flying the flag. Seeing the prominent branding in the UK Pavilion – which is the focal point of the entire hall – makes me feel proud to be British.”

This year, more than 70 companies participated in the UK Pavilion with every type of product possible for pregnancy and babies including toiletries and wipes, feeding and teething accessories, toys and furniture and of course strollers and car seats. The dedicated networking area in the centre of the Pavilion proved hugely popular, not only with exhibitors in the Pavilion, but encouraged international buyers to remain in the area to meet colleagues and enjoy refreshments.

Robert Anslow, managing director of the Baby Products Association, comments: “The UK Pavilion moved to a new location, Hall 4.1 of Koelnmesse this year and we were uncertain about how this would work for our members. However, it was noticeable that this area was busier than other halls at the show – to the point that several companies in Halls 10 and 11 have enquired about relocating to the UK Pavilion next year. Early feedback from our exhibitors indicate that 2017 was another very successful show.”


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Skip Hop wins Innovation Award at K+J!

Skip Hop, the global lifestyle brand devoted to designing innovative ‘Must-Haves Made Better’ for parents, babies and toddlers was recognised by leaders in the industry at last week’s Kind + Jugend international nursery trade show!

Skip Hop’s Explore & More Follow Bee Crawl Toy was honoured as the K+J Innovation Award Winner in the ‘World of Toys’ category!

Designed to grow with baby through three stages, the Explore & More Follow Bee Crawl Toy challenges and encourages little ones learning to crawl with colourful lights, energetic tunes and sweet buzzing sounds. This motorised toy prompts cognitive development through babies’ want to look, listen, reach, crawl and follow the toy around the room. With removable beads and rubberized details for teething, this interactive toy can be enjoyed by pre-crawling babies at 5+ months.

The K+J Innovation Award is considered one of the top awards in the juvenile industry so it’s no wonder the Skip Hop team are thoroughly delighted! Jon Tilley, the UK Country Manager comments that, “We are thrilled to have won! This is our third major industry award win within the playtime category in the past three years. Previous years have seen us win Best Infant Toy for our Roll Around Rattle at Nuremberg Toy Fair!”

Skip Hop currently has products across seven categories: changing bags, on-the-go accessories, bathtime, nursery gear, playtime, baby gyms and the infamous zoo toddler essentials. With some exciting new developments and innovative products coming over the forthcoming year, the future is certainly looking bright for Skip Hop UK!

Link to product video.

For more information on stocking Skip Hop, please contact the Skip Hop office directly at ukoffice@skiphop.com or 01582 434250


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Slumber-Roo celebrates multi-award success for Boba and Beco brands

This year has brought huge success for popular Slumber-Roo brands after a season of high profile awards at the Mumii, Loved By Parents and Gentle Parenting Awards.

The Beco 8 Buckle Carrier was awarded SILVER in the best baby carrier category at the Mumii Awards – a high accolade to achieve in one of the industry’s most competitive categories with over 13 entries this year.

Boba also enjoyed success at the Mumii Awards with the ‘Bamboo’ Wrap receiving BRONZE in the best wrap category, the Boba Hoodie receiving BRONZE in the baby wearing accessory category, and the Boba 4G shortlisted in the best baby carrier category alongside the Beco 8.

This tops off a year of success for Boba who also scooped GOLD and SILVER awards at the Loved By Parent and Gentle Parenting awards:

Loved By Parents Awards

  • Boba ‘Standard’ Wrap – GOLD in the best wrap category
  • Boba ‘Standard’ Wrap – SILVER in the best baby sling category

Gentle Parenting Awards

  • Boba ‘Bamboo’ Wrap – GOLD for best baby carrier for a child under 1-year
  • Boba Hoodie – GOLD for best baby wearing category

Speaking of the success Deborah Smithson, Sales Director at Slumber-Roo, said: “We’re thrilled to see Slumber-Roo brands consistently recognised as some of the best products in the industry. We’re especially pleased to see the Beco 8 achieving such a prestigious award at the Mumii awards so soon after its recent launch. Beco and Boba have consistently won top awards and consumer choice recognition in previous years and we are proud to continue to represent successful brands that are passionate about delivering the highest level of service to their customers.”


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Introducing Brizi, a next-generation 'clean air barrier' to protect young children from urban air pollution

London start-up, Brizi, has launched its Kickstarter campaign to seek £105,000 investment to launch its state of the art portable air sensor and filter. With predictions of 6.6 million premature deaths by 2050 due to air pollution, Brizi’s unique solution provides cleaner air to protect babies and young children in prams and car seats from pollution in urban environments.

Levels of toxic nitrogen dioxide (NO2), emitted mostly by diesel vehicles, have been above legal limits in almost 90% of urban areas in the UK since 2010. Children in prams are at far greater risk from pollutants than adults due to their proximity to the ground and vehicle exhaust pipes, while scientists have shown that children in car seats are at even greater risk from pollution than when walking outside. Multiple research studies link exposure to airborne pollutants with serious health issues including respiratory diseases and impaired cognitive development.

Brizi’s first product, Brizi Baby, is a high-function active fan filter and portable sensor that cleans the air in a child’s breathing area when high levels of pollution are detected. When gas and particulate levels in the air reach dangerous levels, the fan filter is triggered. Brizi Baby’s dual fan filter delivers 1.5 litres of clean filtered air every 10 seconds, forming a ‘clean air barrier’ in the child’s breathing area, reducing their exposure to the airborne pollutants. You can see the video here.

Brizi Baby is designed for prams and strollers, reducing the levels of harmful gases and particles in a child’s breathing area by up to 80%. The ergonomic design sits comfortably behind the child in a pram or car seat.

Brizi Baby’s patented innovative filter incorporates a carbon layer to filter harmful gases and a medical grade nano-metric woven fabric layer to intercept particulates. The pollution mapping and filter technology is patented in the UK. The ergonomic design was created by the award-winning design firm Map Project Office and the app is designed by technology design studio We Are Hive.

After rigorous field testing, Professor Prashant Kumar commented “When we tested Brizi baby in a real-world scenario, it reduced the airborne pollution levels by at least 49%, creating a much cleaner breathing zone for children sitting in prams. When tested near idling vehicles on the road, this reduction in pollution rose to 80%.” Dr. Kumar is the Chair in Air Quality & Health at the University of Surrey and Director of the Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE).

Data from Brizi Baby’s sensors is transmitted via Bluetooth to the free Brizi app, recording personalised air quality data readings in real-time, based on where you travel. Data from the Brizi community will later be aggregated and combined with publicly available air quality information and visualized on the Brizi app and website as a real-time air pollution ‘heat map’, helping others to optimise their daily exercising routes and avoid pollution ‘hotspots’.

Aiming to raise £105,000, Brizi is working with Kickstarter, the world’s largest crowdfunding platform. The investment will bring Brizi Baby to life, funding the manufacture of fully operable units for further crash testing ahead of a public market launch, and for Kickstarter backers.


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Meemoobaby Included in Iconic Small Business Saturday Initiative

Cheeky Rascals is delighted to announce that Meemoobaby, one of the fast-growing brands in its portfolio, has been recognised in the prestigious ‘Small Biz 100’ list; a collection of 100 brands selected across the UK to be celebrated by Small Business Saturday this December.

Small Business Saturday is a not-for-profit campaign that was created to encourage consumers to support small, independent and growing businesses. The well-known initiative recently revealed this year’s chosen brands that it will be championing, and it is fair to say the creators of the Meelight and its distributor, Cheeky Rascals, are thrilled to see Meemoobaby made the cut.

The inspired Meelight, which was designed by London mum, Julia Kelly and her brother, Steve Gould, cleverly attaches to clothing, making the night shift that little bit easier, especially during those late-night feeds and nappy changes! Thoughtfully designed with no stimulating blue light, but simply a soft golden glow, parents are able to see using the ingenious Meelight while little ones will remain undisturbed helping them fall back into a peaceful slumber once the job at hand is done!

Small, lightweight, portable and travel friendly, thanks to its re-chargeable battery, this innovative gadget can be used at home, on holiday or even a sleepover at Grandma’s.

Celebrating its fifth year in the UK, Small Business Saturday will promote one of its carefully selected businesses every day in the lead up to its annual event on 2 December 2017. Small Business Saturday is famously the UK's most successful small business campaign. Last year the initiative saw a fantastic £717m spent with small businesses on the day, up 15% on the previous year. The campaign was supported by over 80% of local councils, trended at number one in the UK on Twitter on the day and reached over 140 million people globally.

Co-founder of Cheeky Rascals, Simon Russell, commented “What a great achievement to be recognised in such a wide reaching national initiative to promote small business. Meemoobaby’s Meelight is such a clever product that has revolutionised the night shift for parents across the UK. Inclusion in Small Business Saturday will not only create exposure for the brand, it will also provide a talking point for all retailers.”

www.cheekyrascals.co.uk


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Messy Little Thing weaning bibs

Born from a frustration with trying to keep her daughter’s clothes clean during weaning, award-winning Messy Little Thing was launched by mum Dawn-Elizabeth Howe.

The specially designed weaning bib, made from lightweight water repellent materials, fits snugly around the baby’s wrists, neck and legs and offers full coverage against spills and stains. This month the product was recognised by partners across the UK as one of the leading bibs, winning silver in Mumii's Best Baby & Toddler Gear Awards 2017.

"I wanted my daughter to enjoy her food at the weaning stage; explore textures, squish it if she wanted and watch it dribble down her sleeve without me fussing about keeping everything clean," Dawn-Elizabeth says. "I couldn’t find a suitable or comfortable bib that covered all her clothes that also fastened around her neck as well as her wrists and legs. So I created my own."

The bibs enable parents and carers to relax while their kids eat and play. And reduce hours spent scrubbing clothes.

Messy Little Thing bibs:

  • Soft-touch, lightweight and water repellent
  • 100% toxin free materials
  • Snug and comfortable yet secure around the neck and wrists
  • Long bib – covers legs and can be secured around ankle when walking
  • A quick wipe after mealtimes
  • Washable and quick drying (2 hours)
  • FREE travel bag to keep any mess contained
  • Made in the UK

www.messylittlething.com


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The Reward Box: An inspiring, educational and fun take on rewarding a child

The Reward Box is a very clever way to encourage a child in lots of things, whether its potty training, making healthy food choices, trying new foods, homework, reading or tooth brushing there are many ways in which it can used.

Available in two designs, Fairy or Pirate, The Reward Box comes with a pouch of 20 silver stars which can be posted in the box each time they achieve a pre-set goal.

Children will love being able to reward themselves a star and working out how many to go before they can be exchanged for their reward, be that a treat, a promise voucher, family activity or a favourite toy given back.

Both designs of Reward Box come complete with a set of stickers containing letters and fun characters to decorate and personalise the box for every child.

www.therewardbox.co.uk


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Evolu ONE80° won the Innovation Award at Kind + Jugend 2017!

The new Childhome Evolu ONE80° won the world's most important Innovation Award in the furniture category at the Kind + Jugend 2017 fair in Cologne, Germany.

The Kind + Jugend Innovation Awards for the best products of the year for babies and toddlers were presented for the fourteenth time at the start of Kind & Jugend 2017.

For the third time in five years the Belgian company Childhome, based in Kontich-Antwerp, won the Kind + Jugend Innovation Award for the best products of the year for babies and toddlers.

A particularly innovative idea, outstanding technology, high level of functionality or extraordinary design were again the most important criteria for the decisions of the international and independent specialist jury consisting of industry professionals, trade journalists and safety experts.

This year, companies from 30 countries put forward a total of 170 products for the coveted winner's seal in eight categories.

The new Evolu ONE80° won this award because of its new swivel function. The swivel seat allows parents to place or feed the child in the seat in three different positions without moving or lifting the chair. Easily pull the trigger to click the child in the next position towards the table. 90° clockwise or 90°counterclockwise relative to the table.

for more information see www.childhome.com or email customerservice@childhome.be


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The new premium DUALFIX i-SIZE from Britax

The DUALFIX i-SIZE, featuring major advancements in comfort, safety and design, is Britax Römer’s most premium product to date.

Suitable from birth to approximately four years old, the car seat is made in Germany, including engineering, crash testing and manufacturing, while its covers are made in Europe. Providing the ultimate luxury of comfort to both parents and children alike, the 360-degree rotatable car seat can be used either rearward or forward facing with easy entry and exit for the child. It comes with six recline positions in both directions for comfortable sleeping at every age, including ergonomically flat positions ideal for newborns. The adjustable rebound bar provides extensive leg space for growing children sitting rearward facing.

The DUALFIX i-SIZE adheres to not only the latest R129 regulation, but also Britax Römer’s stricter, internal safety standards. “SICT inside” for side impact protection decreases the forces of a car crash through targeted energy reduction and keeps them away from children. Additionally, the deeply padded side wings provide optimum security along the entire seat – similar to a soft cocoon.

The ISOFIX installation comes with Britax Römer’s patented Pivot Link System, which first directs the forces of an impact downward into the vehicle seat and then gently forward, thereby greatly reducing the risk of head and neck injury in forward-facing mode. The stylish product comes in a sleek black shell reminiscent of Britax Römer’s popular DUALFIX and will be available starting Autumn 2017.


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Freestyling on Tour

The team at Medela were thrilled to see its Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump making its way around Europe with popular singer and songwriter, Pink. A photo shared by much-loved Pink was posted on photo sharing platform, Instagram, to her phenomenal following of 2.2 million.

Attracting over 270,000 likes, it was clear that Pink fans were delighted to see the star publicising her breastfeeding journey. Many praised Pink for the post with one comment reading “Love this @pink you are such an awesome and real role model for girls today! Keep doing you because you are amazing.”

Pink has openly talked about the normalisation of breastfeeding after posting a picture in April of her breastfeeding her newborn son, with the caption “Hiking makes us thirsty! #happybaby #hotpocket #normalizebreastfeedingyo #arewethereyet.”

The breast pump featured in Pink’s post was the celebrity favourite and award-winning Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump. This small and lightweight pump is easy to use, efficient and portable – ideal for travelling and touring the world, as demonstrated by Pink! Featuring Medela’s 2-Phase Expression Technology, the Freestyle mimics a baby’s natural sucking behaviour, allowing mums to express comfortably, whilst maximising milk flow. With double pumping, rather than single pumping, proven to express 18% more breastmilk, it really is a time-saver so it’s no wonder that working mum, Pink is a fan!

Commenting on the Instagram post, Charlotte Price, Marketing Manager at Medela UK, said “It is lovely to see Pink publicise the normalisation of breastfeeding (or in this case pumping on the go!) To see such a positive and fantastic response from her fans is just brilliant and we’re thrilled she has chosen Medela’s Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump to help support her feeding journey.”

The original post can be found here.


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Peg Perego expands team in the UK

Peg Perego have announced the appointment of Cally Wolf to the position of Trainer & Sales Executive. Cally will be responsible for accounts covering Southern England and Wales.

She joins the team from five years as a sales assistant at Classis Chassis in Hornchurch, where she developed an unrivalled knowledge of the Peg Perego product portfolio. Speaking about her new role Cally said, ‘My appointment came at the perfect time, as I was able to hit the ground running meeting key contacts during Kind+Jugend. Now I’m excited to get out on the road to meet our existing accounts and build relationships with new prospects.’

Speaking about the appointment Phil Howe, Country Manager UK & Ireland said: "We’re thrilled to bring Cally into the team as we move into our second year of trading in the UK. The brand has been incredibly well received, and Cally’s appointment further strengthens the team ahead of exciting new product launches throughout 2018. She will enable us to widen our scope and engage with more retail accounts across the country."


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