NEWS TOP STORY
Strong outlook for Mothercare following ELC sale
he nursery and maternity retailer released its FY19 Q4 trading update in April, revealing that UK like-for-like sales had declined 8.8% during the period; an improvement on the prior two quarters which had both seen sales drop by just over 11%. Mothercare’s ceo Mark Newton-Jones commented that the retailer enters the new financial year in a more robust position and is now a restructured business which is 'fit for the future and with reduced levels of debt'. The FY and Q4 results are Mothercare's first since it sold the Early Learning Centre to The Entertainer for
Environmental standards bill promotes reusable nappies
A Nappy (Environmental Standards) Bill was recently launched by David Linden MP at the Round Chapel in Hackney, London, promoting education, transparency and reusable nappy incentives. The Nappy Bill – which is is supported by The Nappy Alliance - will establish an industry and government-led campaign to promote reusable nappies that meet the environmental standards, legislating to ensure that manufacturers cannot make false eco-friendly claims. Guy Schanschieff, chair of The Nappy Alliance and founder of Bambino Mio, commented: “Reusable nappies have increased in popularity in recent years but there is much more that can be done to support and entice new parents... By opting to use reusable nappies, parents in the UK alone could help stop eight million disposable nappies being thrown into landfill every day.”
Little Tikes celebrates 50th anniversary with Play Big tour
Little Tikes is celebrating a milestone year in the industry in 2019, and has kicked off celebrations with the launch of its anniversary campaign and rebrand – Play Big. The company is also taking Play Big on a tour to reach as many parents and children as possible throughout the UK and encouraging consumers to get hands on with Little Tikes products. “We have been overwhelmed with the reaction to our Play Big events,” said Michelle Lilley, head of marketing at Little Tikes. “We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our milestone year than engaging with the UK through play.”
£13.5 million in March, which played a significant part in the reduction of the company's overall debt. Gary Grant, founder and executive chairman of The Entertainer, said at the time that he would look to ‘bring new life’ to the ELC brand. “By combining our experience with that of ELC’s passionate and capable partners around the world we look forward to re-invigorating the brand for generations to come.” Mothercare's UK store closure programme was also successfully completed ahead of schedule, with the retailer closing 40 stores in the past three months and now standing at 80 stores.
Consumer review site reveals ‘best’ preschool brands for 2019
Independent ratings and review website, The Best For Baby, has released its latest listings for 2019, revealing which brands UK parents consider to be the ‘best’ in their field. Collated from ongoing real-time independent feedback, this year’s fresh data is drawn from 200,000 product ratings and 100,000 reviews and welcomes several new brands to the number one spot in their category. Some of the ‘Best Brands’ for 2019 include MAM, Maxi-Cosi, Fisher Price, Graco, Mamas & Papas, Medela and Angelcare. “We know that our data is an accurate reflection of the market as it stands right now,” says owner of market research company MumsViews, Paul Petrie. “The top brands can be proud of their status and it’s fantastic to see some new names securing the top spot!”
“We have continued to make significant progress in our final quarter as we continue our strategic transformation to deliver a sustainable and profitable future for Mothercare,” Mark continued. “We look forward to the new financial year and to delivering the next phase of our strategic transformation plan.” Above: The ELC acquisition included ELC’s portfolio of toy brands, such as preschool favourite Happyland.
Graco brings brand identity to life
Baby product company Graco UK will be re-energising its brand with a refreshed website and a big push on social media. The new website – www.gracobaby. eu – showcases products and provides advice, whicle also convering key topics such as car seat safety. “Graco is a household name with a rich heritage,” said David Welsh, managing director of Allison Baby UK . “We don’t want to change this, we want to build on it by offering a winning combination of great value and quality products with a much stronger social presence to drive sales and strengthen our brand awareness.” B elow: Graco's clean, modern website is easy to navigate.
HTI inks key deal with nursery brand Joie
HTI Group has signed a new deal with the fastest growing nursery brand in the UK, Joie, to produce a range of prams and pushchairs for children’s dolls. The three-year global deal has been in the making since 2017 and included an early roll out phase with Argos. “We are thrilled to be partnering with a leading nursery brand such as Joie – this is a brand we have watched grow rapidly over the past couple of years so it’s an honour to be able to bring a range of replica dolls prams and pushchairs to the toy market,” said Alison Downie, global licensing and brand director at HTI Group. Above: Toy versions of the Joie Jr Litetrax pushchair, Joie JR Chrome 3-in-1 Pram and the Junior Pact are available.
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