Toys and Games will Continue to Increase in Western Europe
In 2016, traditional toys and games accounted for USD 82.0 billion, with licensed traditional toys and games being USD 22.8 billion of that USD 82.0 billion. Two key franchises that are shaping character licensing in Western Europe are Star Wars and Cars. Star Wars will continue to be a prominent force within the region as every year through 2020 will see some sort of major motion picture release for the franchise. In addition, there will be a variety of associated television shows, video games, and other media content to further drive licensed traditional toy demand. While Cars has gone a long period without a movie release, the franchise has remained popular within Western Europe as one of the few character licensed model vehicle or remote control toys. The company may still continue to retain its relevance due to limited competition in its category as well as Cars 3 recently released in June 2017. The fastest growing category of licensed toys is construction because of its’ appeal to all ages. This includes adult consumers that are willing to buy expensive large playsets, such as the LEGO Millennium Falcon, to serve as decoration in their homes.
Counterfeiting of licensed toys will pose a limited threat in most of Western Europe because parents are becoming increasingly concerned with the safety of the toys their children play with. This makes unofficial, untested counterfeit toys less attractive to consumers. While some countries are imposing controls and requisitions to limit the impact of counterfeit toys on the market, other countries like Spain have faced harsher economic conditions which will be more likely to have a larger counterfeit toy market. Overall, Western Europe, both in terms of parents and regulations, place a heavy emphasis on child toy safety, especially on toys for 0-4 year-olds. In turn, license toys and games is expected to grow in most countries of Western Europe.