Toikido is a new kind of toy company that launched in 2020 from Founder/CEO Darran Garnham. Toikido are a London based entertainment company at the cutting edge of digital design and toys. With a global reach Toikido have an ecosystem across licensing, gaming, music and entertainment. Passionate and knowledgeable with a culture and structure to move fast. The Bugg Report had the chance to speak to Darran in October to learn more about Toikido and what has been happening across the business.
Hey Darran, so how has your first year in business been?
I am extremely proud of what we have achieved given the challenges in front of us, COVID-19, shipping costs, lack of logistics — HGV drivers etc. We set some goals in the first month and we have achieved all but one but I’m confident we will nail that before the end of the year. We owe a lot to our amazingly supportive licensors and key partners on the journey with us, who have supported the ethos of the business from day one.
We owe a lot to our amazingly supportive licensors and key partners on the journey with us, who have supported the ethos of the business from day one.Darran Garnham
There have been some obvious challenges in the world as of late, has it panned out as expected or have there been twists and turns?
As with any business we have had to pivot on a couple of projects as the IP themselves have adapted or changed. However, it’s this flexibility that is part of the Toikido DNA and we spin more like a speedboat than an oil tanker. The team are focused but flexible and I’m proud that that reputation is gaining traction.
So I guess that you are super pleased with the performance of Among Us, in Australia, in the UK and across the globe?
Absolutely. We have almost the perfect storm with a limited Hollywood theatrical release, few high profile brands launching and a user base that topped half a billion users during global lockdown. While the game may have slowed as others launch and the world reopened that core fanbase remains loyal and passionate. The user generated content on social media is getting millions of hits daily.
Given the great reception it has received to date, how will you be looking to build on the success of Among Us in 2022?
I see 2022 as the true launch year of the brand. It will be when we will have reached most points of sale and have the full distribution in place. Some retailers were late to the party in 2021 having been reactive vs proactive. Those that were proactive have had a very good year. We will be building on the current ranges and reflecting on what has been working best. As an example, our costumes have become an unexpected internet sensation so we had to jump deeper into their development and planning. The great thing about being the main global partner on this IP is we can control product flow vs flooding the market and cheapening the brand.
The great thing about being the main global partner on this IP is we can control product flow vs flooding the market and cheapening the brand.Darran Garnham
What are the other highlights of 2021 for Toikido?
We have executed two IP in Among Us with InnerSloth and Back To The Outback with Netflix from contract to shelf in six months. We have shipped around the globe and have endcaps launching in most major retailers. We have also been recognised in the Kidscreen Hot 50. We have stayed humble, available and consistent in our communication.
What have you got planned for 2022… or at least what can you talk about at this stage?
We will be building on Among Us, launching Smighties, Gang Beasts and some other exciting partnerships. We will also announce the first of our own IP projects and the opening of Toikido Studios. Finally in Q1 we will launch a truly unique global logistical project with a major digital influencer. I think that will take care of 2022, but our door is always open!