Tonka Trucks For Sale, Can Wal-Mart Help Bring Tonka Trucks Back To The U.S.?


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TONKA TRUCKS FOR SALE – Image via www.maxim.com

Tonka Trucks For Sale – Which kid won’t be blown away by the 12-foot, black-and-black Tonka truck jacked up on giant wheels, lined with steel bumpers, roof racks, side ladders and stairs, and installed with a flickering constellation of LED lights?

Don’t mind children. These are their parents, people at Funrise will pursue promotional trucks the size of Tonka’s 10,000 Ton-T-Rex. The Van Nuys-based company, Calif., Takes them to events such as Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series, where suped-up trucks (some sponsored by Tonka) chew hilly tracks at crazy speeds. The hope is that they will inspire nostalgic adults who remember pushing Tonka trucks in sandboxes to buy pint-size versions for their little ones.

Tonka Trucks For Sale

It seems to work: Tonka’s sales have risen 63% since 2011, said Funrise, who licensed manufacturing and distribution rights from Hasbro HAS -1.29% in 1998. Originally made from steel at a Minnesota plant, Tonka trucks have been imported from Asia over the past few decades . But there is a surprising twist to this story: Now China Funrise’s new chief executive is exploring how to make at least some Tonka trucks in the United States.

“Toy manufacturing in the US shrank by almost zero,” said CEO King C. Cheng, 23, who was too young to remember when toys were made anywhere except Asia. But with encouragement from Walmart, which has vowed to buy US $ 250 billion worth of American-made products over the next decade, Funrise gives the manufacturer a second glance. Cheng said: “We tried very hard to bring the Tonka vehicle back to A. – something simple, maybe not steel, but compatible with the legacy of the brand.” He has a milestone to shoot: In 2017 Tonka will mark his 70th birthday.

Cheng, who was born in Hong Kong and graduated from Pennsylvania & Marshall College in Pennsylvania, grew up in this business. His father, Y.P. Cheng, is the chairman of Hong Kong-based Matrix Holdings, which has made toys in Asia for 35 years, including millions of Happy Meal toys for McDonald’s MCD + 0.27%. In 2007 the Matrix acquired Funrise, which currently accounts for around 60% of its $ 149 million in revenue.

Now it’s up to younger Cheng, who took over as CEO of Funrise in May, to answer Walmart’s challenges.

The company’s first target is Gazillion Bubbles, a “premium” bubble solution that has been sold since 2004. Although it is cheap to mix and bottled solutions in Vietnam, plastic bottles are filled with mostly heavy water, which means container shipments reach heavy capacity before full loading . “We have to send most of the empty space,” Cheng said.

Executives think, If a beverage company can produce bottled water in the US, why can’t Funrise make bubbles? The key is to exchange toy-grade plastic bottles with recycled plastic bottles. That allowed Funrise to cut the price of its bubble solution in two, even though it made goods in California rather than Asia, and increased sales. “We have more than doubled our income from Gazillion Bubbles in the past three years,” Cheng said. “It really opened our eyes to ask, what other products can we produce and sell domestically?” added President Shirley Price.

Trendy restaurants in Los Angeles provide inspiration for the next American-made product from the company, scheduled for 2016. Booger Balls are colorful and slippery slime balls so kids can throw each other’s balls. Just as a chef can make fake caviar from olive oil, children can mix powder that can biodegrade and then drop it into a water bath, where it thickens into small balls, or “boogers.” Booger Balls will be made in California and New York.

But producing Tonka trucks domestically is a much more difficult challenge. Tonka has hundreds of steel, die-cast, plastic and motorized vehicles in its portfolio, most of them made in Vietnam. Production is very labor intensive – whether painting a toy truck or sticking it securely to the packaging. Funrise is in talks with several American manufacturers about the potential to build Tonka products. “There are still factories in the US that want to do this,” said Kevin Bloomfield, vice president of product development. A year ago it didn’t look decent. “But it’s starting to increase. This technology is getting better and more efficient. The business is different today.” He added: “The encouragement from Walmart is very large. You need large amounts to make sense.” This company is still exploring alternatives, but one option that is being reviewed is a simple injection mold toy that is installed together.

Walmart understands that companies like Funrise need time to reassess their manufacturing strategies and try to help align vendors with potential factories or raw material suppliers. It also provides a $ 10 million research fund to advance domestic manufacturing. “It’s a journey,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart’s vice president for U.S. manufacturing. “The biggest thing Walmart can do is be a partner who is ready and willing with large purchase orders.”

For Tonka and Funrise, that’s all the motivation they need.

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