NEW YORK, Feb. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- In order to keep up with the limitless creativity of children, The Little Tikes Company today announced product offerings that are nearly as vast as a child's imagination. From furniture to fire trucks and bath toys to backyard climbers, the Hudson, Ohio-based company is building upon its strong reputation for creating safe, durable toys designed for the way kids really play by introducing about 100 new products in 2003. (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20030214/CGF019 ) "We're excited to be dramatically increasing our presence in the infant, preschool and truck categories, in addition to continuing to develop the product lines we've built our reputation on over the years," said Rory Leyden, Little Tikes president and CEO. "And while we offer more variety than ever, one thing has stayed the same: our mission to inspire creativity and imagination in children, while answering the needs of parents." The new introductions mark first-time endeavors for Little Tikes into bath toys, juvenile wood furniture and character licensing, as well as signal a departure from "traditional" toy design with more realistic and natural designs and color schemes in some products. The line-up, which more than doubles last year's new offerings, will be unveiled at the American International Toy Fair in New York, Feb. 16-19. -- Emphasis on Infants: Little Tikes' 33 new infant toys, the largest collective launch in the company's 33-year history, were created to jumpstart imagination and creativity in the youngest children. The adorable Goofy Giggles(TM) character invites curious kids to crawl after it as it scoots across the floor -- giggling and making fun noises along the way. The Tunes n' Tales(TM) toys bring favorite nursery rhymes to life through words, pictures and lights. Little Tikes first foray into bath toys delivers 20 new ways to fill the tub with imagination and fun. -- Tons of Trucks: Kids can rev up with three new movin' and cruisin' vehicle lines featuring 18 cars and trucks. Handle Haulers represent the ideal first truck, including the first truck designed specifically for girls. The soft, chunky handle and six sturdy wheels are perfect for children making the transition from crawling to walking. Spark Racerz, a collection of compact cars, will light up any child's imagination with life-like designs and sparking lights. The Rugged Riggz line encourages role play by offering a realistic take on some of today's most popular trucks. Each vehicle has a pivoting cab for supreme steering and is both rugged enough for outdoor adventures and safe enough for indoor excursions due to soft, furniture-friendly wheels. Several of the Rugged Riggz offer two vehicles in one -- such as the race car and motorcycle haulers. -- First Wooden Furniture: Already the leader in plastic furniture for children, Little Tikes is building on its established reputation for safety and durability by launching its first line of wooden furniture -- Natural Interiors. The six new Mission designed items are classic and neutral, so the furniture looks great "as is" or decorated with paint to match a child's personality. The light wood furniture -- including a table, chair, desk, easel, toy box and storage center -- is perfectly scaled for kids, yet adult in design so that it looks at home in any interior or room of the house. -- Character Licensing with Caillou: Little Tikes has embarked on a partnership with the delightful children's program "Caillou" -- which narrates the adventures of a curious 4-year-old and his family and friends. As master toy licensee, Little Tikes will debut a complete line of plush toys, action figures and play sets featuring the star of the PBS show. "Our toys are created for all of the Caillous out there, so this alliance was a natural," said Leyden. -- New Outdoor Adventures: Little Tikes listened to parents' requests for outdoor play products that complement, rather than contrast with, carefully-designed yards. The introduction of Backyard Naturals -- featuring dusty blues, rusty reds, muted browns and garden-like greens -- give the company's popular outdoor items a rustic and attractive look. These new colors help climbers and playhouses blend in beautifully with landscaped yards and manicured lawns. The new Little Tikes products will debut throughout the year and will be available in toy stores and retailers nationwide. For more information on the full line-up of Little Tikes toys, visit www.littletikes.com . About Little Tikes: The Little Tikes Company, founded in 1970, is a Hudson, Ohio-based multi-national manufacturer and marketer of high-quality, innovative children's products. The world's largest rotational molder and a Newell Rubbermaid company, Little Tikes employs more than 2,000 associates around the world. For more information, visit www.littletikes.com .
SOURCE The Little Tikes Company