Toys and Games Global Industry Overview

Strategy Briefing

About This Report

Jul 2019

Despite economic headwinds in some markets, the toys and games industry continues to see growth globally. However, the continuing adoption of smart devices and digital entertainment at an ever earlier age puts a spotlight on the need for seamless integration of physical play and the digital world on a number of levels. Successful future innovation will require an even deeper understanding of children’s activities as well as the gender divide in approaches to games, playtime and socialising.

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Toys and Games Global Industry Overview

Key Findings

Adoption of technology and increasing screen time at earlier ages 

A growing proportion of children aged 0-12 years have easy access to mobile phones, tablets, gaming devices and computers, leading to an increase in the time children spent playing video games, on social media and watching TV/video. This trend will continue, including in developing markets, where smart devices are becoming popular for entertainment.

Integration of digital and physical playtime

Continued industry growth will require the seamless integration of the physical and digital worlds to attract modern consumers, both parents and children, and to reach wider bases. Integration and “co-dependence” of the physical and digital spheres is likely to strengthen in the coming years.

Licensing still offers significant opportunities for growth

Licensing will remain a significant part of the toys and games industry landscape, as well as a key aspect of the integration of digital and physical gaming. Successful local and regional licences will remain on the watch list.

Emerging markets as key drivers of global growth

While video games are surging across all regions, in traditional toys and games, the role of emerging and developing markets is rather stronger than that of the rather sluggish developed regions. In traditional toys, the share of developing regions in sales is predicted to rise from 32% in 2018 to 39% in 2023.


Key trends shaping toys and games
Areas of opportunity

Global Outlook

Positive growth despite economic headwinds in a number of markets
Toys and games is among the top 10 consumer goods industries globally
Ongoing growth in video games globally
Asia Pacific surges ahead in video games as the number of gamers rises
Increased access to smart devices supports shift to gaming
China and the US will drive absolute growth in sales
Video games supports dominance of e-commerce in retail distribution

Leading Companies and Brands

Fragmented marketplace with rising competitive pressures
Adapting to the changing marketplace helps LEGO to stabilise sales
Building alliances to meet consumer demand
Building on the success of blind collectibles
Exploring further key trends shaping toys and games

Top Five Trends Shaping the Industry

Earlier access to tech supports strong rise in number of mobile gamers
Integrating digital and physical playtime: Consider also gender divide
Licensing opportunities boosted by successful local franchises
Increasing reliance on developing regions: opportunities and risks

Market Snapshots

Global snapshot of traditional toys and games
Global snapshot of video games
Regional snapshot: Asia Pacific
Regional snapshot: North America
Regional snapshot: Latin America
Regional snapshot: Western Europe
Regional snapshot: Middle East and Africa
Regional snapshot: Eastern Europe
Regional snapshot: Australasia

Appendix: Competitor Analytics

Competitor Analytics tool
Market Overlap
Overlap Matrices

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