I had the opportunity to visit MGA CEO and Founder Isaac Larian. He is a pioneer in the toy and entertainment industry, and like many successful CEOs, he knows he needs to drive change in consumer culture to stay ahead of the competition. At the same time, Larian is committed to making it easier for consumers to lead a sustainable lifestyle.
In my recent research and advisory on sustainability, consumers have expressed a desire to lead a more sustainable lifestyle, which means brands need to make it affordable, affordable and easy to enjoy the products that consumers want. Consumers also want to feel less guilty about their buying decisions.
According to Mary Ann Hanson, president of the Paper and Packaging Board, “it’s nice to see that more and more companies are using materials like paper and paper packaging that are environmentally friendly in design and come from rich renewable resources, forests, so you can do good for the planet. ”
Jeff Fromm: What are the main trends in the game?
Isaac Larian: The main trends in which MGA has invested and introduced innovations include:
Focus on mental health – Toys are part of the answer to involve children in social development and play at home. In particular, the big trend is plush toys and games that promote mindfulness, as well as fidget toys and tactile toys with an emphasis on soothing, mostly due to the COVID pandemic.
Creativity – In self-expression through art, but also through role-playing. As AI becomes an even greater component of children’s toys, it is believed that the use of such toys will develop critical thinking and creative skills, which are critical areas for future employment and success. Toys that develop creativity in a new way will become more important for parents who want to prepare their children for the future.
Gender neutrality – I recently had an interview with a reporter on this topic and how the MGA will continue to focus on breaking gender stereotypes on toys.
Kidult space – Adolescents and adults who have not previously bought toys have been buying them since the advent of COVID. This is further facilitated by toy companies that supply toys that evoke nostalgia (five mini-surprise brands), current and past entertainment (Lego sets, collectible figurines for Game of Thronesetc.) and the desire to express themselves through their own sympathies. This can continue to grow as other categories of toys figure out how to please adults.
Sustainability – Parents want to instill lasting values and raise their children with their favorite toys. They also want to teach their children to take care of their environment. This trend will become critical in the production, packaging and distribution of toys. The toy products themselves will change, and children’s interest in sustainability will also create new opportunities; think recycler against garbage truck.
From: How does the MGA think about sustainability?
Larian: The MGA has taken various steps when thinking about sustainability. This movement flows in everything we do. We thought about our whole lifestyle at MGA from the inside. So that means three areas of opportunity right now: real toys, packaging and delivery, and lifestyle and culture.
In Toys MGA has introduced products that fall into the green category like our Real Wood Adventure collection from Little Tikes. We have also entered the world of NFT and digital games, getting rid of extravagance, encouraging children to explore the creative universe of their favorite toys LOL online. This focus is applied throughout the MGA worldwide, as demonstrated by our partners in Poland, by changing the floorboards in Cozy Coupes from yellow and pink to black to minimize waste and use recycled material. They also use exclusively cardboard boxes made from 100% recycled cardboard, return to production 100% of production waste, and introduced a line of toys Go Green, which 92.3% consist of recycled materials.
In terms of packaging and delivery, our reusable packaging from Lalaloopsy and our Crazy Fast Car toy, which will be released this fall, are examples of toys with packaging that can be reused for play. LOL Surprise also introduced paper as a replacement plastic through the blind package packaging. We have also established a permanent recycling partnership with Terracycle in 2019 in several regions around the world, allowing fans to conveniently recycle LOL Surprise! packing. In 2021, we switched from plastic packaging to our Amazon supplies to all cartons. In addition, we recently opened a plant in Mexico, which helps cut the supply chain and in turn reduces energy.
MGA has also updated its sustainability initiatives across brands and content by launching an episode of Let’s Go Cozy Coupe by Little Tikes, which focuses on recycling awareness as well as social content distributed through MGA channels, highlighting DIY tips and tricks for redesign LOL Surprise! ™! ™! packaging in creative ways.
In terms of lifestyle and culture, MGA worldwide reduces carbon emissions in the workplace. We have moved from buying and storing plastic water bottles to introducing filtered water fountains and systems that are easy for reusable paper cups and glasses. Our utensils, plates and supplies are now made from bamboo or recycled paper, and we encourage our staff to ride electric cars, offering charging stations on campuses around the world.
We are diligently and diligently looking for other ways to change the experience of our employees and strive for sustainability.
From: What do you think parents and children want when they think about enjoyment and participation in learning?
Larian: Parents are focused on minimizing pandemic harm to their children – in terms of mental health, social development and education. Parents use toys to ensure that children continue to develop social skills because so much eye play has been taken from their daily experiences. Children learn in different ways – they see; so they copy. They represent and pretend; so they create. They are role-playing games; so they compose their own stories. Toys, games (even entertainment) that occupy, allow and teach them are fun and help them grow.
From: How will the MGA lead to the transformation of the industry to more paper solutions?
Larian: The MGA has taken seriously the need to reduce the carbon footprint. And we understand that eliminating plastic and maintaining our progress is not easy, but it needs to be done. We have achieved two important goals that we have already announced:
- To achieve and maintain 95% of the recycled or Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) – certified content in paper and wood fibers used in our products and packaging.
- To achieve by 2025 by 2025 100% recycling, recycling or biological plastics in our products and packaging.