Positive outlook in the toy market: Toy & Edu China, Baby & Stroller China and Licensing China support industry recovery

The strong Chinese toy market has seen signs of recovery following the worldwide COVID-19 disruption. As South China’s leading trade platform for their respective industries, Toy & Edu China, Baby & Stroller China as well as Licensing China, are set to further help industry players reconnect and rebound. The next edition will be held at the Shenzhen World Exhibition & Convention Center from 30 March to 1 April 2021, along with a number of digital solutions to provide more business opportunities to onsite and virtual participants.

China’s toy market was worth USD 14.9 billion in 2019 and is expected to reach USD 27.2 billion by 2025, according to the market research firm Imarc Group1. Even under the influence of the ongoing pandemic, the toys and games market in the country has proved resilient, with a growth of more than 6% recorded in June 2020.

“Like many other industries in China, the toys and games sector has taken a hit from the pandemic,” Ms Wendy Wen, Senior General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd commented. “But the prospects are brighter as we are seeing gradual recovery. By getting the industry together, we hope this will help them to tap into the growth opportunities and navigate the new normal.” She added: “In a challenging time like this, it is important for us as a trade fair organiser to promote industry recovery and boost confidence among industry stakeholders. Therefore we have held a physical event complemented by a series of virtual services starting from 2020.”

Mr Wu Guofang, General Manager of Yangzhou Aihao Toys shared his thoughts on the benefits of the 2020 event: “We believe participating in Toy & Edu China is one of the most important ways to recover from COVID-19. The fair provides new business opportunities as many genuine and high-quality buyers are present and placing orders.”

Virtual meetings with overseas buyers at the 2020 fairs (Photo: Messe Frankfurt)

Combining physical event with virtual elements to unlock business opportunities

In view of the rapid shift to digital platforms and services driven by the pandemic, the fairs’ organisers have launched E-connect 360 for all fair attendees, with a series of digital solutions including an AI-powered business matching platform, a virtual showroom to highlight product innovations and an online information centre to share the latest industry news.

Meanwhile, in case of travel restrictions, overseas participants can join the fairs virtually. Exhibitors will be accessible via video, while their products and brochures will be on display at the live event. Overseas buyers can enjoy online meetings with their preferred exhibitors. In both circumstances, staff will be present onsite to provide interpreting services and assistance in product demonstrations.

Shenzhen: a vital springboard to access South China

In 2020 the fairs relocated from Guangzhou to the Shenzhen World Exhibition & Convention Center, the world’s largest exhibition venue. With this move, global enterprises can benefit more from the economic growth brought by the Greater Bay Area initiative and the city’s reputation for technological innovation. In addition, Shenzhen is home to many domestic e-commerce and cross-border e-commerce platforms, creating more online trading opportunities for exhibitors, especially when the pandemic has further accelerated the shift to e-commerce.

The fairs in 2020 featured 1,321 exhibitors from eight countries and regions whilst 61,553 visitors attended, establishing them as an ideal marketplace to access the promising South China market.

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