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M&A: Toys & Entertainment Edition

Ubisoft acquires 1492 Studio, a French video game development house specializing in free-to-play episodic and interactive stories on mobile.

eOne buys out the remaining 49% stake in The Mark Gordon Co. that it didn’t already own in a deal worth $209 million. As part of the deal, founder Mark Gordon joins eOne as Chief Content Officer.

Spin Master acquires plush manufacturer Gund from Enesco for $79.1 million in a deal expected to close on on April 1, 2018. Funded by a mix of cash and credit, the Gund buy will be the Canadian toyco’s ninth acquisition since it went public in 2015.

Goliath grows in the sporting category with the purchase of Wahu, an Australian outdoor brand known for its unique beach toys.

DC Thomson’s Parragon Books is looking to close down after years of difficult market conditions and severe pressure on margins.

PlayMonster acquires Kid O Toys, a manufacturer known for its developmental and educational toddler and preschool lines.

Hasbro launches its new community crowdfunding platform, HasLab—its production platform for rare editions and items. The first toy up is a Star Wars offering; it won’t be manufactured unless the project receives 5,000 backers pledging $499.99 each for the toy.

In addition to opening a new 20,000 sq. ft. flagship location in New York’s Rockefeller Plaza, FAO Schwarz partners with travel retailer Hudson Group to open a chain of branded airport shops in the U.S. and Canada.

FAO Schwarz will also launch in mainland China thanks to an agreement with toy distributor Kidsland. The long-term, multi-channel partnership will see FAO Schwarz enter the market with flagship locations in Beijing and Shanghai. Kidsland will also open 30 smaller branded specialty stores and shop-in-shops in 200 department stores across China over the next 5 years.

ReedPOP buys up Gamer Network, the parentco of EGX and the Eurogamer content network. EGX is the U.K.’s largest consumer video game show and is held annually in the fall.

American Greetings and CREAM (“Cookies Rule Everything Around Me”) collaborate on two exclusive ice cream sandwiches based on the iconic Care Bears’ characters.


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