Playskool

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Playskool Inc.
Type Subsidiary
Founded 1901
Headquarters Pawtucket, Rhode Island
Parent Hasbro
Website http://www.playskool.com

Playskool is an American company that produces educational toys and games for children. It is a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and is headquartered in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

History[edit]

The Playskool Institute was established by Lucille King in 1901 as a division of the John Schroeder Lumber Company in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. King, an employee at the company, developed wooden toys to use as teaching aids for children in the classroom. In 1935, the Playskool Institute became a division of Thorncraft, Inc., and established offices in Chicago, Illinois. In 1938, Playskool was purchased by the Joseph Lumber Company, where Manuel Fink was placed in charge of operations. In 1940, Fink, along with Robert Meythaler, bought Playskool and established the Playskool Manufacturing Company.[1]

In 1943, Playskool bought the J.L. Wright Company, the manufacturer of Lincoln Logs. In 1958, Playskool merged with Holgate Toys, Inc., a wood product manufacturer based in Kane, Pennsylvania, and in 1962, they purchased the Halsam Company, a producer of wooden blocks, checkers, dominoes, and construction sets. In 1968, Playskool became a subsidiary of Milton Bradley; both companies were acquired by Hasbro, Inc. in 1984.[1]

After the acquisition, Playskool began operating out of Pawtucket, Rhode Island as a division of Hasbro.[2] In 1985, Playskool released a line of infant products under the Tommee Tippee brand name, including bibs and bottles. Many Hasbro products targeted at preschoolers were rebranded with the Playskool name, including Play-Doh and Tonka. Playskool also began licensing toys from other designers, creating licensing agreements to manufacture Teddy Ruxpin, Barney, Arthur, Teletubbies, and Nickelodeon branded products.[2] Hasbro also began licensing the Playskool brand name to other vendors, manufacturing a number of products under the Playskool name, including books, baby care supplies, video games, and children's apparel.[2][3][4][5][6]

Products[edit]

Playskool produces many lines of educational toys and games for children.[7] Some of Playskool's signature brands and toys include Mr. Potato Head, Tonka, Alphie, Weebles, Elefun, [[Sesame Street]] toys, and Gloworm.

Playskool creates products for newborn to preschool-aged children; products like the Kick Start Gym, Step Start Walk 'n Ride, and the Tummy Time line are aimed at developing the motor skills of babies.[8][9][10] Several toys, like Playskool's Pipeworks, Go Go Gears, and Busy Basics lines, were created to allow children to express creativity.[11][12] Playskool also produces several dolls and action figures, including Dolly Surprise and Kota the Triceratops.[13]

Brands[edit]

Playskool brands include:

Slogans[edit]

Slogan Years Used
Our toys make good friends (1970's)
Feeling good about the Playskool years (1985–1992)
What will they think of next? (1992–1997)
Wanna play with us? (1997–1999)
Come and Discover! (2000–2001)
Here I Come, World! (2001–2002)
Playskool Plays Kool (2002–2004)
Let's Play! (2004–2007)
Believe in PLAY (2007–2009)
More Than Play (2009–2011)
P.S. It's Playskool (2011–present)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Liz, Slade; Jennifer Moore, Nora Brennan Morrison, Jeff Cronin. "Playskool Manufacturing Company". Lehman Brothers Collection Guide. President and Fellows of Harvard College. Retrieved 2009-10-22. 
  2. ^ a b c Woodward, A (1999). "Playskool, Inc.". International Directory of Company Histories. Encyclopedia.com. Retrieved 2009-11-30. 
  3. ^ Ashdown, Simon (10-01-1999), "Hasbro does that synergy thing", Kidscreen: Pg.18 
  4. ^ Colman, Gregory (02-01-1991), "What's Playskool's name doing on a pair of sneakers?; Playskool Inc. and other toy companies license their name", Children's Business: Pg. p61(5) Vol. V6 No. N2 
  5. ^ "Retailers up ante with exclusive lines", Chain Drug Review, 2006-11-06: Pg. 31(2) Vol. 28 No. 19, retrieved 2009-11-30 
  6. ^ "Hasbro requires digital gaming rights Infogames for $65 million", Hasbro press release, 9 June 2005.
  7. ^ Ogata, Amy (2004). "Creative Playthings". Winterthur Portfolio 39 (2/3). doi:10.1086/433197. 
  8. ^ Tramontana, Lisa (2009-12-10). "New Toys, Old Tricks: Hot and unusual toys with familiar themes amuse kids and adults". The Advocate (Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Capital City Press). pp. Pg. 18–FUN. 
  9. ^ Bernstein, Margaret (2003-04-20). "High-tech toys to amuse baby". Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana: The Times-Picayune Publishing Company). pp. Pg. 20. 
  10. ^ Chang, Irene (August–September 2008), "Playtime Time-out", Working Mother: Pg. 116 Vol. 31 No. 6, retrieved 2009-11-30 
  11. ^ "Preschool construction workers design and build" (Press release). PR Newswire. 1988-11-29. Retrieved 2009-11-30. 
  12. ^ "Want a safe, lasting gift? Here's help". Grand Rapid Press (Michigan: Grand Rapids Press). 2002-11-28. pp. Pg. A22. 
  13. ^ Evertz, Mary (2009-12-09). "Oh boy toys // Let the shopping begin, but be forewarned: This year's hot toys are selling fast". St. Petersburg Times (Florida: Times Publishing Company). pp. Pg. 1D. 

External links[edit]