Collectors of the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic toyline were surprised to findout that their toys now carries “Made In India” instead of the usual “Made In China” or “Made In Vietnam”. Following a tip from Steevy Maximus of our sister site HISSTANK, the staff of TFW2005 dug into this new development to find out more.
Sure enough in an article published on The Wall Street Journal dating January 6th, Hasbro is indeed moving some of its toy manufacturing to India; including our beloved franchise Transformers.
“John Leung, chairman of GFT Group Ltd., a manufacturer of Transformers, “Star Wars” and other toys for Hasbro that is based in China’s Guangdong province, said he plans to start producing soon from a rented factory in Chennai.
Eight years ago, GFT shifted much of its production from China to Vietnam, where today the company’s workers earn around $215 a month, less than Chinese counterparts’ salaries. But Vietnam is quickly becoming saturated with factories, Mr. Leung said.
“In the next eight to 10 years, Vietnam will be finished,” he said. He said Hasbro, based in Pawtucket, R.I., had urged him to set up shop in India.”
On our coverage of Hasbro’s Press & Investor Day 2015 Hasbro stated that they will be expanding into the Indian market and it seems as though the expansion is not just market penetration but manufacturing as well.
Since the very beginning of Transformers and G. I. Joe franchises, India exported the toys to the South-East Asian region under the brand name “Funskool” on behalf of Hasbro and even included Funskool Variants (sought after by many Joe collectors for their rarity). This new move may even benefit the collectors of the said region by having low production costs to decrease toy prices.
Hasbro’s Transformers toys are currently manufactured in Vietnam and China.