Toy State, a Hong Kong-based toy company that’s had its US headquarters in Norwood since 2005, said it has acquired the worldwide rights to Nikko, a brand that specializes in radio-controlled vehicles such as miniature race cars.
Nikko toys will complement Toy State’s existing portfolio of toy vehicles, which includes toys under the brand names of Road Rippers, Hot Wheels, and James Bond 007, the company said.
A private company, Toy State is not disclosing the financial terms of the multiple transactions that allowed it to acquire the Nikko portfolio.
The Nikko portfolio includes toys marketed through licensing partnerships with global automakers and such brands as Transformers, Fast & Furious, and Angry Birds.
In a statement, Toy State founder and chief executive Simon Cheng used the industry lingo of R/C to refer to the radio-controlled toy vehicle category.
“Nikko’s own long history of quality and innovation make it a compelling fit to join the Toy State family,” Cheng said. “This acquisition is a powerful move for Toy State because it gives us more critical mass in the key global R/C category,and strengthens our already strong retail position.”
For much of the second half of Toy State’s 30-year history, the company has gotten the bulk of its business from toy vehicles in what the industry refers to as the “lights-and sound” category. Push a button on one of these motorized lights-and-sound category vehicles, and they will flash lights, play music, and move along a predetermined path, said Andy Friess, the company’s general manager of US operations.
About five years ago, Toy State took its lights-and-sound brand Road Rippers and added a line of radio-controlled of Road Rippers. That was the company’s entry into the radio-controlled vehicle category, Friess said.
This year, under a licensing agreement with giant toy maker Mattel Inc. that covers Mattel’s Hot Wheels brand, Toy State has introduced both radio-controlled and lights-and-sound Hot Wheels vehicles, he said. Toy State’s plastic Hot Wheels are much larger than the metal diecast Hot Wheels that many consumers are familiar with.
The acquisition of the Nikko line-up gives Toy State an even bigger presence in the category of radio-controlled vehicles.
“Our big goal is to dominate the vehicle aisle” of toy stores, Friess said.
Chris Reidy can be reached at email@example.com.