The June 2020 issue of Progressive Preschool is available to read now, packed full of all the latest industry news, commentary and insight. Features include product focuses on both indoor and outdoor toys, the reusable nappy and potty changing sector as well as a analysis and feedback covering the respective effort, adaptations and united fronts shown by the toy, nursery and preschool sector.
It’s often said that you get a true measure of someone by how they respond to a crisis; how they interpret, react and bounce back from events we can’t control. With that in mind it has been both uplifting and inspiring to see how creatively the preschool industry has responded to the challenges faced in recent months, despite the significant effects on everyone’s lives and livelihoods.
Almost immediately we saw toy, nursery, apparel and other preschool category suppliers and retailers responding positively to a range of trading restrictions, stock shortages and cashflow issues, finding solutions to ensure they could continue to operate despite remote working, home-schooling and various other personal and professional challenges.
Once schools closed their doors at the end of March, there was an understandable rush on educational games and puzzles, shortly followed by the inevitable boost in outdoor toys as the good weather sent everyone into their gardens. Retailers continued to offer online sales and deliveries throughout much of lockdown, with demand proving so great that some products are still completely sold out (we’re looking at you, trampolines). We have included features on both indoor and outdoor toys in this issue – because while social distancing continues, life will continue to be a little different for all of us. Parents have had a chance to really observe what brands, entertainment and products children are playing during the last few months, whilst the potential for a baby boom also offers something to keep an eye on.
Nursery product also remained in demand, with some categories doing particularly well over the lockdown period. Reusable nappies and potty training brands benefitted from panic-buying shortages and saw a significant boost in sales, as outlined in our feature on the sector.
Elsewhere in this issue we have also included a special extended feedback section to allow businesses and retailers alike to share their responses, experiences, thoughts and plans for the future as we wait for consumer confidence in the high street to return. And of course we are all keeping our fingers crossed for the much-needed baby boost towards the end of the year!
With all that said, the PPS team would like to offer a personal thank you to all of you who have kept in touch, updating us on how you’re getting on, been involved in our online Zoom conferences and helped us present the true picture of the preschool product and retail sector’s response to the global pandemic. It’s been a difficult time for everyone, but ongoing, honest communication between suppliers and retailers is crucial and by continuing to work together we will all prosper.
“It has been our aim to be absolutely alongside the market during the fight,” said Rob Willis, director / co-owner at Max Publishing which owns Progressive Preschool, PreschoolNews.net and the Progressive Preschool Awards. “Trade media enjoy being there in the good times, but that absolutely means we must step-up and support you in the bad times – I am proud that our team remained active and did exactly that – our thanks to the sector for its continued friendship and business – in that order.”