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Hello from Virginia, USA!

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Hello everyone! By way of background, I did not grow up with PM -- it had not reached the US market to any great extent when I was a child. My first exposure to it was in 2002, when my small family moved to a house right across the street from a shopping center containing a toy store full of PM. As soon as my children were old enough, I started buying PM for them -- first specials and Figures, then small sets, then larger items like the large airplane and the hospital. I then found out I had a PM store on my way to work (I drove from NJ into New York City every day, the PM store was in a mall). This led to me buying more sets. PM was a lot of fun for my children, mixing and matching the various characters, and I found I liked PM too. Unfortunately, Lego (boo) took over as the main interest and I wound up selling all of the PM at a yard sale at some point when my children were 12 and 13. (On a side note, a PM collector was the one who bought it all -- I made his day.) I did keep one small klicky I always liked -- a Figures sheriff with a rifle and wanted poster -- but then forgot about PM.
This past Christmas, however, I started thinking about toys again. With my children in college now, I miss toy shopping and the joy toys bring at Christmas. This led me to do some searching online, where I saw some wonderful PM space sets and others I had missed over the past decade or so -- so I ordered some NIB, with the intent of putting them away for (hopefully) grandchildren someday.
My searches weren't limited to products: I also did some serious research into PM's various problems and issues, ranging from their sad political decisions regarding some PM lines to their financial mismanagement to quality control matters. It really opened my eyes and added depth to what most people just consider a simple toy company. As this site addressed not only the PM products but the larger company environment as well, I joined to a) broaden my understanding of PM's history and current affairs, b) keep on top of new releases worldwide and c) learn the most effective and least costly ways of acquiring PM these days.
Now for something more serious: I also joined this site in the vain hope someone high up at PM is on here and valuing customer input. From what I see in the US, it is bleak. 90% of the stores in my area listed on PM's site as carrying PM no longer carry PM. How are children supposed to be exposed to/fall in love with a toy line they never see? If PM is counting on parents finding its site and then buying blindly for children, I am really worried. Children NEED to see the toys to want them. The two largest US chains stock Lego and Disney products to the ceiling, which leads children to seeing and wanting the toys. I don't know what PM is thinking, but they have got to figure it out.
So that's it for me (apologies for being longwinded). I look forward to being a part of this wonderful community!

Hi George,
Welcome from the Netherlands.
I would recommend following playmobil in the news and sometimes using Google translate for the German articles about the company/management articles. (At least that’s what I do when I find an interesting article)

Welcome from Portugal!

--- Quote from: Alex4420 on January 08, 2024, 15:35:58 ---Now for something more serious: I also joined this site in the vain hope someone high up at PM is on here and valuing customer input.

--- End quote ---

Unfortunately, playmobil was very clear on how they value collectors. As in, they do NOT.
And I better shut up now..  :-X

Joshua D:
Welcome from  California! I remember the good old days when my local toy shop had almost the entire catalog on their shelves for years and years. My parents had bought some for me when I was a child but eventually I sold them in a yard sale. It wasn’t until after I was out of high school that I found myself back in the old toy shop buying the “new” western sets. That was the mid 90’s. It took a couple more years but, eventually I had practically the entire Western collection thanks to mom and pop shops and of course eBay. I still have them along with a castle and knights, pirate ship with buccaneers, city stuff and a good amount of various figures that I enjoy swapping parts for custom creations.

They have found new life again in the hands of my son and we enjoy playing and telling stories with them. We also love Lego but, there’s a certain undeniable charm that playmo people have that one can’t help but appreciate. It is a shame that it has all but disappeared from toy shelves in the U.S. My old local toy store now only has a handful of small sets in the clearance section. I also
 have become less and less interested in the latest offerings. I prefer my old late 80’s to mid 90’s sets much better than the latest sets based on a movie or cartoon with the ridiculous amount of overprinting on the figures now. Once in a while I see some good parts that I incorporate into my collection but they are few and far between these days. Second hand is the way to go for me.

The lack of actual toys in stores here is a complete mystery to me. How do you expand a customer base if the customers never see the toys? Do they even have a marketing strategy for the US? Licensing outdated US properties for adult collectors is OK, but doesn't help them long-term where it counts-- with children.


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