Exclusive: Pocket Money & Collectibles make a comeback

Published on: 11th April 2023

Following a tough period during the pandemic, pocket money toys are winning again at retail as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite.

Collectibles in general have been a huge market for the UK toy industry for several years now with one in five toys sold last year being a collectible, accounting for 13% of the value of all toy sales, according to Circana (formerly NPD) data.

It seems kids, and kidults, can’t get enough of miniature lines and many suppliers are tapping into the appetite for tiny collectibles, a trend which is growing at a rapid pace, in part due to the product’s affordability. Fuelled by a surge in popularity on social platforms such as TikTok, the trend for mini everyday items and mini food, shows no sign of abating and we hear from MGA Entertainment about its new miniature collectible brands, Miniverse and L.O.L. Surprise! Sooo Mini!, as well as from Zuru with the latest from its ever-growing 5 Surprise Mini Brands line

The desire for more affordable toys is also boosting sales of ranges such as SuperThings and KookyLoos for Magicbox, where UK MD Nicola Bergot tells us: “Low priced doesn’t mean low quality. Consumers also need to be able to trade up with confidence, knowing that the toy has more available to build a collection.”

Nicola says the Pocket Money Toy category is thriving again after experiencing tough trading conditions during the Covid pandemic when toy stores had to close. The category relies heavily on children and parents spending time together in toy stores and toy aisles and repeat purchasing as they build their collection.

PMI International is seeing expansion across its ranges, which include collectibles based on high profile, on-trend IPs such as Sonic Prime, Piñata Smashlings and Pudgy Penguins. A new collectible range based on Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie, is due  this summer, marking the company’s first foray into the pre-school area.

Richard North, president of Wow! Stuff, says that toy companies are having to work harder and smarter in the collectibles category. “Consumers looking to get the most bang for their buck is driving innovation in this area, and we’re seeing more demand for collectibles that present continued value,” he explains, detailing how Wow! Stuff has responded with the development of the licensed Nano Pods collection

To read more about what’s hot in pocket money toys and collectibles, see our special feature, which appeared in the April edition of Toy World, here.


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