Discover Key Insights from Target: Register Now for the 2019 Annual Business Conference

February 26, 2019 | Registration is open for The Toy Association’s Annual Business Conference (formerly the Summer Business Conference), where toy and youth entertainment industry executives will learn critical insights on the most important issues affecting their businesses through an exclusive educational and networking conference. The keynote presentations will be given by top-level executives at Target on the future of retail and how to enhance their business dealings with this influential retailer.

Taking place June 18 to 19 at the Minneapolis Hilton in Minneapolis, MN, industry senior-level executives along with credit and logistics managers, and other executives in finance and operations, sales and marketing, and product development are encouraged to attend.

Attendees will participate in a host of roundtables, workshops, and interactive discussions on topics including legislation and regulations impacting the toy business; intellectual property rights and protecting their brands from counterfeit products; the changing face of retail; strategies for bringing products to market; capitalization; and finance and credit.

“Following on last year’s success in Seattle with Amazon, the Annual Business Conference is a must-attend event for toy, play, licensing and youth products executives looking to add invaluable growth strategies and protect their businesses in the shifting toy and retail landscapes,” said Steve Pasierb, president and CEO of The Toy Association. “We are thrilled to have Target as a partner adding an unmatched view of the retail sector, in addition to a packed roster of expert-led sessions and panels. June in Minneapolis is the place to be!”

Additional highlights of the two-day conference include:

  • Seminars presented by Target executives discussing the future of retail, importing, branding, licensing, product innovation, sustainable sourcing, and digital marketing, among other topics.
  • A panel on “Buying or Selling a Company: Firsthand Experiences to Help You Prepare,” including Bob Wann, Chief Play Monster, PlayMonster, and chairman, The Toy Association; Jay Foreman, CEO, Basic Fun!; Dean Stewart, vice president of credit and risk management, Spin Master; and Jeremy Ballaro, CFO, Buffalo Games. The panel will be moderated by Paul Vitale, executive vice president of finance and operations, The Toy Association.
  • Sessions tailored to finance, credit, and operations executives including a “Beyond Credit” roundtable for senior finance and operations executives, a workshop for credit managers discussing the challenges of the current credit and collections environment; a credit risk analysis of key retail accounts by Dennis Cantalupo, president, PulseRatings, and partner, RiemerPlus.
  • A panel on “Making the Most of Your Short-Term Assets (Including Receivables and Inventory).” Presenters include Marc Heller, president, CIT Commercial Services; Todd Lynady, head of broker management, Euler Hermes; David Slavik, senior vice president of asset based lending, US Bank; and moderated by David Tawil, president, ETG Capital.
  • Additional sessions on product safety compliance, online marketplace IP protection, enhancing credit scoring; ecommerce tax implications; industry perspectives presented by The NPD Group, and more.
  • An external affairs, and regulatory and standards update by Toy Association staff; and
  • Two days of invaluable networking with industry peers and outside experts.

At the close of the first day’s educational sessions, attendees are invited to mix and mingle with colleagues at a networking party at the historic Mill City Museum from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Admission is included with conference registration.

The registration rate for the 2019 Annual Business Conference for Toy Association members is $795 per person; the investment for non-members is $1,195 per person.

Information including registration, hotel bookings, and additional educational sessions is available on