Meijer tests toy contest for holidays

Two U.S. toy companies have a shot at exclusive distribution with Meijer this holiday season thanks to a innovative contest announced Monday.

The retailer unveiled details of the Meijer Next Great Toymaker contest designed to give two small U.S. toymakers the chance to have their toy receive exclusive distribution on this holiday season.

“Meijer strives to provide our customers the best selection of toys in-store and online during the holiday season,” said Liwanag Ojala, VP e-commerce for Meijer. “This contest allows us to offer something exclusive to shoppers while supporting small businesses here in the U.S., something we know is important to our customers.”

Although such retailers as Staples and Walmart have conducted similar contests, the initiative is a first of its kind for Meijer and is open to small toy companies and entrepreneurs in the United States with 50 employees or less. Eligible toys must fit in one of two age categories, one-to-three or four-to-eight years of age.  To enter, toymakers will send one sample toy along with a contest entry form to Meijer by Aug. 17.  A panel of Meijer judges including representatives from e-commerce, toy purchasing and quality assurance will then judge the entries based on uniqueness, educational relevance, creativity and quality. Meijer customers will also have an opportunity to share their opinions with voting available on the Meijer Facebook page Aug. 29 through Sept. 4.

The winning toy from each age group will be announced on Sept. 7 with the toys available on beginning Nov. 21.

“ is the go-to destination for holiday toy shopping and we’re excited to add these new toys to our huge online selection of nearly 8,000 toys,” said Ojala. “With free shipping to local Meijer stores, makes it simple to experience the joy of giving this holiday season.”

Meijer operate 198 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.


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