The second annual Rocky Mountain Hobby-Expo (RMHE), set for October 25-28 at the Denver Mart, debuts a national industry trade show for the first two days of the event that will bring national and regional manufacturers to Denver as resurgent independent retailers respond to the closing of Toys “R” Us.
“The buzz in the industry is that hobby and specialty toy store sales are up since Toys “R” Us went under,” says RMHE executive director Jim Marski.
The show, sponsored by the Hobby Manufacturers Association (HMA), will be a combined consumer/trade show covering all categories of the hobby industry.
“The Toys “R” Us bankruptcy opens up an opportunity for the smaller locally owned/operated specialty toy and hobby retailers to capture new market share,” says Bob Wilke, HMA’s president and president of Hobby Town. “We are looking at a significant boost in sales for the holiday season.”
Hobby retailers are also poised for growth as many hobby products have evolved from consumer assembled projects to ready to fly (RTF), ready to run (RTR) or ready to float (RTF) vehicles that can be in the air, in the water or on the ground within minutes after purchase. “Hobby manufacturers continue to innovate their products to utilize the latest technologies and provide consumer products that are not only fun, but add value for parents seeking educational components that align with the STEM/STEAM educational focus and Maker movements.”
The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association estimates specialty toy retailers could see as much as 20% growth in sales during the upcoming 2018 holiday shopping season.
Specialty toys are a $2 to $3 billion dollar industry nationally, while the craft-oriented space populated by retailers such as Hobby Lobby and Michaels is significantly larger at approximately $40 billion annually.
Participants in the trade event include national players from the hobby, specialty toy, hardware and craft store niches.
The Hobby-Expo will be held at the Denver Mart. Trade show schedule for Thursday, October 25th, is 9 am – 4 pm and includes trade education and workshops. On Friday October 26th trade floor sales and meetings will go from 9 am to 4 PM. Additional info on the trade and consumer events can be found at www.RockyMountainHobby-Expo.com
SOURCE Hobby-Expo LLC