As recently as January 5th, the Toy Association assured exhibitors, buyers, and the press that Toy Fair was still a “go” (see HERE). That scenario changed yesterday with the announcement that Toy Fair New York 2022 has now been canceled.
“Key to our efforts these past two weeks has been the balance of some 700 remaining committed toy manufacturers saying they need and want Toy Fair 2022 to build their businesses, weighing that against those departing and seriously on the fence, and needing to provide a sufficient quantity and quality across the retail buying community necessary to deliver a positive experience,” said Steve Pasierb, President & CEO of The Toy Association. “As that balance has shifted, we are obligated to make the best decision in everyone’s interest no matter how heartbreaking for so many and potentially damaging some business’ future prospects. The wide range of other events that occur across New York City during Toy Fair week are now also impacted.”
You can read the full statement HERE, but the overall consensus appears to be that too many major toy companies opted out of the event with concerns over the pandemic. With the rapid rise of the Covid-19 Omicron variant, I can’t say that I blame them.
Toy Fair New York was originally set to take place from February 19 to 22, 2022. While its physical presence will be missed, rest be assured that the show will go on, much like last year, virtually. Stay tuned for breaking developments on that front.