Company News

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Posted on Feb 13, 2014 in Company News

ALEX BRANDS™ Launches 150 New Products at Toy Fair 2014

ALEX BRANDS™ Launches 150 New Products at Toy Fair 2014

New Family of Leading Toy Brands, Comprised of ALEX TOYS®, POOF®, SLINKY®, SCIENTIFIC EXPLORER®, IDEAL® and ZOOB®, Offers a Counter Point to Digital and Video Games Northvale, NJ, February 12, 2014 – The ALEX BRANDS™ family will build on its heritage of delivering high quality, innovative toys that encourage exploration, foster confidence, and introduce valuable lifetime skills with over 150 new product offerings at Toy Fair 2014. “We offer parent alternatives to the influx of digital and video games on the market by providing children with playtime toys that encourage creative and active...

New Family of Leading Toy Brands, Comprised of ALEX TOYS®, POOF®, SLINKY®, SCIENTIFIC EXPLORER®, IDEAL® and ZOOB®, Offers a Counter Point to Digital and Video Games

Northvale, NJ, February 12, 2014 – The ALEX BRANDS™ family will build on its heritage of delivering high quality, innovative toys that encourage exploration, foster confidence, and introduce valuable lifetime skills with over 150 new product offerings at Toy Fair 2014.

“We offer parent alternatives to the influx of digital and video games on the market by providing children with playtime toys that encourage creative and active play,” says Andy Bailen, Executive Vice President of Merchandising & Marketing.

From classic, timeless toys and games to open-ended activities that emphasize children’s developmental needs, ALEX BRANDS™ collective portfolio, sold worldwide, includes more than 2,000 products spanning the diverse categories of games, science kits, preschool and infant toys, construction sets, craft activity kits, art supplies, bath toys, Made in the USA foam sports balls, and the iconic SLINKY®.

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Posted on Jan 29, 2014 in Company News

Introducing the ALEX BRANDS™  Family of Leading Toy Brands

Introducing the ALEX BRANDS™ Family of Leading Toy Brands

ALEX TOYS®, POOF-SLINKY® and ZOOB® Come Together Under New Collective Brand Identity Northvale, NJ, January 29, 2014 – ALEX TOYS®, POOF-SLINKY® and ZOOB® announced today the formation of ALEX BRANDS™ , a family of brands which includes some of the most iconic names in the toy industry, including ALEX TOYS®, POOF®, SLINKY®, SCIENTIFIC EXPLORERTM, IDEAL® and ZOOB®. The ALEX BRANDS™ for all of our retail partners,” says Keller. The recent consolidation of design and product development within the internal team in Northvale, NJ has enabled a heightened focus on innovation and trend leadership....

ALEX TOYS®, POOF-SLINKY® and ZOOB® Come Together Under New Collective Brand Identity

Northvale, NJ, January 29, 2014 – ALEX TOYS®, POOF-SLINKY® and ZOOB® announced today the formation of ALEX BRANDS™ , a family of brands which includes some of the most iconic names in the toy industry, including ALEX TOYS®, POOF®, SLINKY®, SCIENTIFIC EXPLORERTM, IDEAL® and ZOOB®.

The ALEX BRANDS™ for all of our retail partners,” says Keller.

The recent consolidation of design and product development within the internal team in Northvale, NJ has enabled a heightened focus on innovation and trend leadership. At Toy Fair 2014 in New York City (Booths #2133 and #2237), the ALEX BRANDS™ platform will showcase its efforts, with the introduction of over 150 new items across all its brands.

“We can now also enjoy greater sales and marketing efficiencies, which will translate into increased consumer awareness and demand for all of our product lines, which we believe is a big win for everyone,” says Andy Bailen, Executive Vice President of Merchandising & Marketing. “We will continue to fulfill a need in the marketplace among retailers and consumers for engaging, creative play that offers a counterpoint to digital and video games, just as our award winning toys have been doing for years.”

ALEX BRANDS™ is a portfolio company of Propel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands. Propel Equity Partners acquired POOF-SLINKY® in July 2012, FUNDEX GAMES® in December 2012, ALEX TOYS® in May 2013, and ZOOB® in September 2013. Additionally, the ALEX BRANDS™ family includes CADACO®, acquired in 2010, and SCIENTIFIC EXPLORER™ and FUZZOODLES, acquired in 2011.

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Posted on Sep 11, 2013 in Company News

Propel Equity Partners Acquires ZOOB

Propel Equity Partners Acquires ZOOB

ZOOB, the award-winning open-ended construction toy line joins POOF®-ALEX® family of leading toy brands on Propel Equity Partners roster

Greenwich, CT, September 11 — Propel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands, has acquired the ZOOB construction toy line from Infinitoy, Inc.

ZOOB joins the POOF®-ALEX® family of brands, which includes Slinky®, POOF®, Ideal®, Scientific Explorer®, Fundex Games® and ALEX® on the Propel Equity Partners roster of leading children’s brands.

POOF-Slinky was acquired by Propel Equity Partners in July of 2012, with Fundex Games acquired in December of 2012 and ALEX Toys in May of 2013.

“There’s tremendous interest in construction toys that are intuitive, easy to use and educational,” says Michael Cornell, Chairman and CEO of Propel Equity Partners.  “ZOOB is a prime example of this. Its interlocking pieces excel at helping children improve their abilities with spatial relationships, motor skills and problem-solving – and therefore are highly favored by parents.

“ZOOB fits exceedingly well into our family of brands, combining the inventiveness and imagination of a toy such as Slinky with the educational value of Scientific Explorer and the do-it-yourself, hands-on creativity of ALEX Toys.”

Introduced in 1997, ZOOB is an award-winning building set with a difference—the pieces move after you put them together, allowing for truly interactive creations.  ZOOB pieces are based on a natural and living system and features five basic pieces that snap together 20 different ways, making building easy and versatile.

With more than 30 different themed sets, ZOOB products are sold throughout the U.S. and in more than 100 countries through a variety of distribution channels.

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Posted on May 1, 2013 in Company News

Propel Equity Partners Acquires ALEX®

Propel Equity Partners Acquires ALEX®

Propel Equity Partners, a private equity rm focused on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands, has acquired ALEX®, a leading maker of children’s creative products.

ALEX joins the POOF®-Slinky® family of brands, which includes Slinky®, POOF®, Ideal®, Scientific Explorer® and Fundex Games® on the Propel Equity Partners roster of leading toy brands.

“ALEX has developed into a leading lifestyle brand for kids, presenting tremendous opportunities for expansion,” says Michael Cornell, Chairman and CEO of Propel Equity Partners. “This acquisition represents another step in our mission of bringing the most innovative and successful companies in the toy and craft industry under our umbrella.” Founded in 1986 with the creation of a plastic lunch box lled with arts and crafts supplies, ALEX has grown into a preeminent manufacturer of children’s creative products designed to foster personal expression and build self-esteem.

The brand now features more than 1,000 items for all ages, from infants to ‘tweens, and has expanded to include products for imaginative and dramatic play, fashion and jewelry, and bath and outdoor toys.

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Posted on Jan 2, 2013 in Company News

Propel Equity Partners Acquires Fundex Games Ltd.

Propel Equity Partners Acquires Fundex Games Ltd.

Propel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands, has acquired Fundex Games LTD., a leading maker of popular games.

The assets of Fundex Games will be incorporated under the  Ideal® and POOF® brands of POOF®-Slinky®, LLC., makers of iconic toys under the  Slinky®, POOF®, Ideal®, and Scientific Explorer® brands, among others.
POOF-Slinky, LLC. was acquired by Propel Equity Partners in July of 2012.

“Fundex Games has a wide array of board, card, outdoor and dice games, as well as toys, that fit perfectly under our existing brands” says Michael Cornell, Partner, Propel Equity Partners. “This acquisition is a good next step in keeping with our strategy of acquiring leading innovative companies and bringing them under the POOF-Slinky brand umbrella.”

POOF-Slinky sells some of the most iconic brands in the toy market, including Slinky, one of the most recognizable toys in the history of the U.S. POOF-Slinky products are sold in more than 35,000 retail outlets.

About Propel Equity Partners

Propel Equity Partners, LLC, is a private equity firm focused on investment in branded consumer products businesses. Founded in 2012, Propel Equity Partners provides its portfolio companies with strategic and operational support to enable more efficient operations and accelerated sales growth. The firm believes in building value by partnering with existing management teams and by energizing brands and invigorating new product innovation.

For more information visit www.propelequity.com.

About POOF®-Slinky®

POOF-Slinky is the manufacturer of the world famous Slinky® and POOF, a line of the bestselling foam sport balls in North America. Ideal® and Scientific Explorer® are other well-known brands rounding out the POOF-Slinky family.

With roots in the toy industry for more than 100 years, POOF-Slinky brands continue to grow and broaden. New generations of kids, their parents and grandparents have proven safe, classic fun never goes out of style.

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Posted on Jul 27, 2012 in Company News

Propel Equity Partners Invests in POOF®-Slinky®, Inc., Makers of Iconic Slinky®, POOF® and Ideal® Brand Toys

Propel Equity Partners Invests in POOF®-Slinky®, Inc., Makers of Iconic Slinky®, POOF® and Ideal® Brand Toys

Partnering With POOF-Slinky Management to Continue Rapidly Growing the Business

Greenwich, CT, July 25 — POOF®-Slinky®, Inc., makers of iconic toys under the Slinky®, POOF®, Ideal®, Cadaco® Scientific Explorer and Fuzzoodles® brands, has received a significant investment from Propel Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused exclusively on investing and creating value in leading consumer brands.

Based in Plymouth, Michigan, POOF-Slinky was founded more than 65 years ago. Managed by CEO Ray Dallavecchia Jr. and COO Doug Ferner, the Company has amassed a portfolio of some of the most highly recognizable branded toys, sports balls, educational activity kits, table top and board games and novelty products in the industry. Best known for its classic metal Slinky and Slinky Dog products and POOF foam balls, POOF-Slinky products are sold in more than 35,000 retail outlets. The Company operates two manufacturing plants in Michigan and Pennsylvania and has over 125 employees.

“In what is a fragmented industry, POOF-Slinky has consistently excelled as a leader,” says Michael Cornell, Partner, Propel Equity Partners. “Ray and Doug have put together an impressive stable of authentic toy brands that we believe have tremendous additional opportunities for growth at retail in the $20 billion plus toy market. We are looking forward to applying our expertise in the consumer products category to help POOF-Slinky accelerate organic growth, maximize brand potential, expand U.S. production capacity and make strategic acquisitions.”

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Posted on Sep 8, 2011 in Company News

POOF® – Slinky® Acquires Scientific Explorer™ and Fuzzoodles® Product Lines

POOF® – Slinky® Acquires Scientific Explorer™ and Fuzzoodles® Product Lines

POOF®-Slinky®, Inc., Plymouth, MI., has acquired the Scientific Explorer™ and Fuzzoodles® product lines, and other related assets, from Elmer’s Products, Inc. Both product lines, formerly assets of Elmer’s Giddy Up division, have extensive North American and international distribution.

The Scientific Explorer line, a decades long mainstay in the science and activity category, consists of a wide range of multi-faceted kits that introduce hands-on science in a fun, easy format. Several kits such as Bubble Gum Activity Kit, Spa Science, Meteor Rocket Kit and Magic Science Wizards, cover the quirky side of science, and within each kit, combine an equal mix of education and activity to capture kids’ interest and imagination.

Fuzzoodles, an activity line made up of fluffy, colorful noodles that bend and twist, were introduced in 2010 and promoted through television, print and social media outlets. Each product in the activity line includes an array of wacky accessories that allow a child to flip and switch parts to create endless customized characters.  Products such as Monster Madness, Crazy Critters, Glamour Girl, and Plush Pals are a few of the many items within the line.

According to Ray Dallavecchia, President and CEO of POOF®-Slinky®, Inc., “we are pleased to add these innovative product lines to our portfolio of brands.  We believe with the addition of the Scientific Explorer line, POOF®-Slinky®, Inc. will be the premier provider of science and activity related products in the industry.  The Fuzzoodles line will broaden our activity range under the Ideal® brand, and give us a platform to expand further within this category.”

 

Elmer’s Products, Inc., headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, has been a trusted brand and industry leader for more than 60 years. Elmer’s produces a variety of well-known adhesives, arts and crafts, DIY, educational and office products developed to provide project solutions and inspire people to create, build and learn for life.  Elmer’s also markets the number one instant adhesive in the U.S., Instant Krazy Glue®, and X-ACTO®, a leader in innovative cutting blades, knives, and office supplies.

POOf®-Slinky®, Inc., is the maker of Poof®, Slinky®, and Ideal® branded toys and games, which consist of POOF® foam balls and toys, the world famous Slinky®, Slinky Science®, and other Slinky® branded toys, and Ideal® branded board and table top games.

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