Archive for the ‘Press Releases’ Category

HEXBUG® CREATOR PARTNERS WITH LEGENDARY SKATEBOARDER TONY HAWK® TO LAUNCH ALL NEW CIRCUIT BOARDS™ BRAND & PRODUCT LINE

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Tony Hawk® Circuit Boards™ to hit retail in Europe and North America this Fall

Greenville, Texas September 15, 2014 – Innovation First International, masterminds behind the widely recognized HEXBUG® brand, today announced the launch of its new Tony Hawk® Circuit Boards™ brand and product line due to hit shelves across Europe and North America this Fall. The new line of motorized remote control skateboards and ramp sets marks a giant leap in innovation for the traditional sport of fingerboarding.

“Circuit Boards is the coolest technology I’ve seen in skateboard toys,” said Tony Hawk. “I knew we made something special when my kids wouldn’t stop playing with them on the first day.”

“We’re stoked to team up with the global sensation that is Tony Hawk. He is the go-to guru for all things skateboarding, and we’re confident kids are going to love the hi-tech twist we’ve put on traditional fingerboards,” said Tony Norman, president and chief executive officer of Innovation First International. “We paid a lot of attention to make sure we got the little things right, too – from the width of the decks, to the rubber of the wheels and, of course, the force of the power axle! We can’t wait to see the international response from both of our fan bases.”

Kids of all ages can unleash their inner pro skater with Tony Hawk Circuit Boards. Choose between two ways to play: traditional fingerboard style or slap on the power axle and take off with the I/R remote control, turning on the turbo boost for accelerated ramp action! To power on, roll the board forward and begin to play. To power off, roll the board in reverse. One of the coolest things about this new toy line is that users can build the ultimate skatepark and grind the rails, pull off a rock to fakie, or master their own series of gnarly tricks with their favorite Birdhouse deck. The initial product assortment available at launch will include 24 Birdhouse and Tony Hawk authentic decks to customize and collect, along with a variety of ramp sets and skateparks.

HEXBUG joined the Birdhouse Midwest Summer Tour in August 2014 to give families and action sports fans a sneak peek at the new offering. HEXBUG will be showcasing the new product line by appointment at the TIA Fall Toy Preview from October 7-9, 2014 at the Dallas Market Center; the London Toy Fair from January 20-22, 2015 at the London Olympia Exhibition Centre; the Spielwarenmesse International Toy Fair in Nuremburg, Germany from January 28 – February 2, 2015; and at the American International Toy Fair in New York from February 14-17, 2015 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

About HEXBUG and Innovation First:
HEXBUG is a brand and product line developed, distributed, and marketed by Innovation First Labs, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Innovation First International. Innovation First is a high-tech robotics and engineering company at the bleeding edge of consumer technology. HEXBUG was designed as a way to give children a positive experience with robotics at a young age. People are drawn to the HEXBUG brand for the products’ fascinating behavior, intelligent bug-like attributes and eye-catching packaging.

About Tony Hawk Inc.
Tony Hawk Inc. is a world leader in its field with the unprecedented ability to bring alternative sports and their unique lifestyle to the masses while maintaining an indispensable edge of authenticity with the market’s hard-core, trendsetting audience. Founded by Tony Hawk in 1998, THI is based in Vista, CA.

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HEXBUG HAVOC SWARMS THE APPLE APP STORE: GAME ON FOR HEXBUG FANS!

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Kids Race and Battle the Nano V2 with Innovation First’s Thrilling, Free, Mobile Game

Innovation First International, creators of the internationally popular HEXBUG® brand, in cooperation with developer Behaviour Interactive, today announced the launch of HEXBUG Havoc on the Apple App Store. HEXBUG Havoc, the free-to-play mobile game, allows HEXBUG fans to experience and interact with their favorite micro robotic creatures in a whole new, daring way!

“This game will bring fans even closer to the fun of HEXBUG’s playful, adventurous robotic creatures,” said Bob Mimlitch, III co-founder and chief technology officer of Innovation First International. “The new platform is a fun, free complement to our existing robotic toys, allowing users to easily take their HEXBUGs on the go, while leaving their tracks and physical bugs at home. The game is also totally addictive.”

At the start of each mission, players choose their own Nano V2 before exploring their way through endless horizontal tracks and vertical tubes filled with collectibles, power-ups, obstacles, and… enemy HEXBUGs! Players will need to travel fast and far to unlock new track pieces, complete missions, and confront electrifying surprises around each and every turn.

In addition to traversing the auto-generated race track, the fast-paced gaming experience includes a number of fun features, such as:

  • Intuitive swipe, tap, and jump controls
  • Rewarding battle missions
  • A wide-range of different tracks and Nano V2 elements to explore and unlock as you play
  • The ability to steal battery life and take down HEXBUGs blocking your path by bumping them aside or ramming them off the track

HEXBUG Havoc players can access the app through Game Center, challenge their friends, and post their scores to Facebook and Twitter. HEXBUG Havoc can be played on any of the following devices: iPhone (4 or later), iPad (2 or later), iPad Mini, and iPod Touch (4 or later).

For more information or support, please find and like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter:

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INNOVATION FIRST STITCHES LICENSING AGREEMENT WITH BIOWORLD

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

Local Partnership to Bring HEXBUG® Apparel & Sleepwear to Retail Spring 2014

Innovation First International, creators of the internationally popular HEXBUG® brand, today announced a partnership with Bioworld Merchandising, granting apparel licensing rights for HEXBUG branded t-shirts and sleepwear. Due to appear at selected retailers in the United States this Spring, the hot new HEXBUG themed boys’ apparel will be on display at MAGIC MARKET WEEK, a trade show for contemporary men’s and women’s apparel and footwear, from February 18 – 20, 2014.

“We are excited to extend the HEXBUG brand into the youth apparel market with smart, cutting-edge apparel designs, which we know our fans will geek-out over,” said Tony Norman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Innovation First International. “Bioworld’s hip, savvy, non-traditional approach to creative design, manufacturing and merchandising goes hand in hand with our brand philosophy and creative culture.”

Bioworld and Innovation First are two of the fastest-growing companies in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Bioworld Merchandising is a licensed brand apparel and accessory manufacturer that has built a solid infrastructure to support design, manufacturing, and distribution to all retail channels. Bioworld has strong relationships with major retailers and has demonstrated a keen ability to spot exciting, relevant partnerships with key youth brands.

“We are looking forward to collaborating with the Innovation First team. The HEXBUG brand embodies the attributes we find to be important in our products: innovation, quality and fun.” said Jennifer Staley, Vice President of Licensing for Bioworld. “This project is a great fit for us.”

Innovation First is a high-tech robotics and engineering company at the bleeding edge of consumer technology. HEXBUG products are designed to give children a positive experience with robotics at a young age. HEXBUG branded apparel and sleepwear joins other fun licensing partnerships that the company has forged for 2014, including a partnership with Crocs to create HEXBUG Jibbitz, decorative shoe charms that fit into the holes of Crocs shoes, as well as a new partnership with one of the year’s biggest blockbuster movies: “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” in which HEXBUG is bringing the iconic, franchise characters to life for fans of all ages, with the Transformers HEXBUG Warriors & Nano product lines.

For more information on HEXBUG, please visit www.HEXBUG.com. Follow the HEXBUG brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest for up to date information on this and other product news and promotions.

About Innovation First International:
Innovation First International was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs.  Innovation First International’s three main subsidiaries, VEX Robotics, Inc., Innovation First Labs, Inc. (makers of HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures), and RackSolutions, Inc. span the education, consumer and business-to-business markets.

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WARNING! RETAILERS REPORT WIDE-SPREAD INFESTATION OF NEW HEXBUG NANO V2 BUGS & AQUABOTS – EXTERMINATORS PANIC, KIDS REJOICE

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

Innovation First International’s newly-launched, vertical climbing HEXBUG Nano V2 and water-born Aquabot invade retail stores nationwide

Innovation First International (IFI) is excited to announce that its two new HEXBUG® micro robotic product lines, sure to be top toys on every kids wish list this holiday season, are now available at specialty and mass retailers nationwide, including Walmart®, Target®, Toys“R”Us® and RadioShack®, among others. HEXBUG Nano V2 and Aquabot products are designed to unlock kids’ creative potential and reinforce learning through insanely fun, imaginative playtime.

“Innovating tech toys is in our DNA. We’re always pushing the boundaries of our products in order to deliver out-of-the-ordinary, dynamic play experiences, “said Tony Norman, president and chief executive officer of Innovation First International. “With the debut of Nano V2 and Aquabot, our customers can now engage with our toys in ways they only dreamed of before – defying gravity through vertical ascents and plunging into water.”

August also marked the launch of the company’s “They Can Climb” integrated marketing campaign, playing off the hit feature of Nano V2, with a mix of TV advertising across all children’s television networks, a series of consumer generated online and social media contests, as well as an experiential marketing integration event that it hosted at the X Games® X Fest Los Angeles. For more information on the #theycanclimb contests, and to see photos, videos and highlights from past events visit www.nanov2.com. IFI’s comprehensive fall 2013 TV public relations and advertising schedule will also include the Aquabot as well as some of the most popular mechanical HEXBUG Micro Robotic Creatures.

HEXBUG NANO V2 and AQUABOT at a glance:

  • HEXBUG Nano V2 – The Nano V2 is a brand new breed of gravity-defying HEXBUG Nanos and construction play sets, that will leave kids and parents shouting, “They Can Climb!” in total astonishment. These bugs can now climb up vertically, as high as the Nano V2 tubes are built, to the tip top of any Habitat Set. Kids can build their set up anyway they want, making each build session different, increasing repeat play. In addition to climbing up, Nano V2 bugs can also explore a set by climbing through tubes horizontally, upside down on their backs, around corners and through loops! The quick little critters are also capable of passing another bug in a single tube to avoid a traffic jam!
  • HEXBUG AQUABOT – The Aquabot is the first water-born HEXBUG micro robotic creature with smart fish technology! Powered by electro-magnetic propulsion, this robotic toy swims just like a real fish, diving down and around to explore its environment. The colorful Aquabot offers kids the fun experience of having a pet fish, without all the messy clean-up. The Aquabot is equipped with an automatic on and off sensor that activates when submerged in water, a design element meant to get kids thinking about the science behind the robot. When in water, the colorful HEXBUG Aquabot comes to life swimming around, diving and changing directions to explore its environment. Available in two body styles and ten translucent colors.

About HEXBUG and Innovation First:
HEXBUG® is a product line developed, distributed, and marketed by Innovation First Labs, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of privately held Innovation First International, Inc.  The company was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs.  Innovation First began developing electronics for unmanned mobile ground robots and is now an industry leader in research and development for the hobby, competition, education and toy markets.

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HEXBUG HEADED FOR MCDONALD’S GOLDEN ARCHES

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

IFI and McDonald’s® Partner to Feature HEXBUG Micro Robots in McDonald’s Happy Meal®

Innovation First International, creators of the widely popular HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures brand, today announced a partnership with McDonald’s USA LLC, the nation’s leading foodservice provider, to feature custom HEXBUG toys in McDonald’s Happy Meals at participating restaurants across North America.

The four week HEXBUG Happy Meal program will run from February 22 – through March 21, 2013 while supplies last. Participating McDonald’s restaurants across the United States and Canada will offer customers one of six collectible HEXBUG Micro Robotic Creatures with the purchase of a Happy Meal:

  • Fast crawling HEXBUG Speed Beetle™ in Green and Red
  • Slow crawling HEXBUG Beetle™ in Black and Orange
  • Bump and go HEXBUG Nano® Pullback Blue and Black

“To be a part of the iconic McDonald’s Happy Meal experience is truly an honor,” said Chris Troyak, president of Innovation First Labs, Inc. “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to reach millions of new and old fans directly with special, collectible HEXBUG toys that they can only get at McDonald’s.”

McDonald’s will support the partnership with a fully-integrated marketing campaign that includes television advertising, in-restaurant merchandising and custom packaging, coupled with an online web presence. The television advertising campaign will run from February 22 – March 21, 2013.

Designed to foster children’s creativity, develop their fine-motor skills, and fuel hours of imaginative playtime, HEXBUG Micro Robotic Creatures are innovative, high-tech toys with features and behaviors that enable them to react to their environment. The world-recognized brand is available at retailers nationwide and at hexbug.com.

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IFI PARTNERS WITH RAVENSBURGER FOR HEXBUG® THEMED BOARD GAME

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013


HEXBUG® Creator Inks Deal to Bring Kakerlakak to Retail in Europe this Spring

Innovation First International, masterminds behind the internationally recognized HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures brand, today announced a new licensing partnership with Ravensburger, to introduce Kakerlakak – the world’s first HEXBUG themed board game. Due to crawl onto retail shelves in Europe this Spring, the Kakerlakak game will be on display at the Spielwarenmesse, International Toy Fair Nuremburg, Germany from January 30 – February 4 at Booth A12-D13 in hall 12.0.

“We are excited to add Ravensburger as a HEXBUG licensee for the debut of Kakerlakak, which introduces our innovative vibrating robotic toy to traditional family game play,” said Tony Norman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Innovation First International. “Ravensburger’s approach to product development goes hand in hand with our brand philosophy of delivering quality entertainment experiences that can be enjoyed by the entire family.”

Kakerlakak is a fast-paced action game, with a frenetic HEXBUG Nano® mini robot at the center of the action. The interactive Kakerlakak game requires rapid response and hand-to-eye coordination, and challenges children ages five and up to maneuver the skittering bug through the kitchen maze using a variety of kitchen utensils. The ultimate winner is the player with the most chips at the end of the game, which they earn by trapping the bug into their corner.

“We are very pleased to partner with Innovation First, whose wildly popular HEXBUG brand has enabled us to deliver a new and innovative board game that speaks to trends in popular culture and will help expand their growing European fan base,” said Thomas Zumbühl, International Product Manager of Ravensburger.

Ravensburger is Europe’s leading supplier of puzzles, games and craft products and one of the leading publishers of books for children and adolescents in the German-speaking area. The blue triangle is one of the most renowned trademarks in Germany. The programme comprises almost 8,000 different products (including all country-specific editions) that are sold worldwide and 85% of which are produced internally. In 2011 a workforce of 1,640 earned revenues of 319.5 million euros.

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INNOVATION FIRST TAPS U.S. INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION TO INVESTIGATE CVS CAREMARK (CVS) FOR UNFAIR TRADE PRACTICES

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Innovation First Makes Good on Promise to Defend Trade Secrets Across Entire Supply Chain

GREENVILLE, Texas – January 4, 2013 –Innovation First International filed a complaint today with the U.S. International Trade Commission, requesting an investigation be instituted against CVS Caremark (NYSE:CVS) – a pharmacy with over 7,500 stores nationwide, for unfair trade practices. The claim against CVS is related to the “Robo Fish” toy, manufactured by Zuru Toys, Inc., and sold in CVS stores to its consumers. Innovation First contends that the “Robo Fish” toy includes technology developed by the company and its employees that was misappropriated by persons affiliated with Zuru Toys.

“This should come as no surprise to CVS. We warned all major retailers last year of the consequences they would face if they were to import the Robo Fish product,” explained Tony Norman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Innovation First International. “Against our advice, this retailer knowingly chose to carry the product line, and will now have to face the legal consequences associated with its actions,” concluded Norman.

Innovation First asserts that the “Robo Fish” product incorporates technology that was stolen by an IFI engineer and shopped for several months to other toy companies.  The engineer ultimately placed “Robo Fish” with Zuru Toys and resigned as head of R&D for Innovation First’s China development team the day of the sale.  Innovation First sued Zuru Toys more than a year ago and remains engaged in litigation with Zuru Toys, despite attempts by Zuru Toys to avoid the U.S. justice system. Major U.S. retailers other than CVS have elected not to carry the offending products. Innovation First plans to release its official version of the Aqua Fish product under the HEXBUG brand this August.

“The toy industry is notorious for encouraging knock-off artists by placing offending products on their retail shelves,” said Norman. “Retailers know the toy industry, but some pretend not to recognize obvious knock-offs or other unfair trade practices.  Those retailers bury their heads in the sand and rely on the hollow promise of indemnification from unscrupulous suppliers – a practice that stifles true innovation.”

International Trade Commission investigations and proceedings focus directly on the wrongful actions of companies, like CVS, that import offending products.  “Unlike a typical toy company, we are broadly diversified and not dependent solely upon toy revenue. Therefore, we won’t hesitate to file suit against retailers, or seek justice through other avenues like the ITC if anyone in the supply chain steals our technology, confidential information or trade secrets,” concluded Norman.

About Innovation First International:

Innovation First International was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs.  Innovation First International’s three main subsidiaries, VEX Robotics, Inc., Innovation First Labs, Inc. (makers of HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures), and RackSolutions, Inc. span the education, consumer and business-to-business markets.

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INNOVATION FIRST LAUNCHES ELITE NEW TOY FORCE: HEXBUG WARRIORS BATTLING ROBOTS WITH CUSTOMIZABLE BATTLE SETS

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

Highly Anticipated New Line of HEXBUG Products Hit Retail Stores Worldwide and Online at HEXBUG.com/Warriors

GREENVILLE, Texas – Aug. 2, 2012 – The creator of the popular HEXBUG brand of high-tech micro robotic creatures has unleashed the newest members of the HEXBUG family: the rough and tough HEXBUG® Warriors Battling Robots. These futuristic fighters are tiny, collectible, micro robots that use the physics of vibration, similar to the famed patented HEXBUG Nano, to propel forward and challenge competitors in sleek new customizable Battle Arenas and Stadiums.

“We’re introducing some exciting new high-tech features and competitive elements with the launch of HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots, including customizable armor, damage indicator lights, and shock sensors, that give kids new, interactive ways to engage in open-ended play with our toys,” said Chris Troyak, president of Innovation First Labs, Inc. “This is the first major extension of the HEXBUG brand that uses our successfully patented HEXBUG Nano technology, and it is just the beginning of what we have planned to roll-out for the holiday season.”

HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots come in four colors – red, yellow, blue and green – representing four dueling science academies from the year 2087, Viridia Prep, Tronikon Tech, Bionika Cyborg & Caldera Prep. Kids can outfit each Warrior with strategic combinations of mechanical weapons and armor to outmaneuver their rivals, and control the fate of their academy’s Warrior fleet.  As each HEXBUG Warrior Battling Robot is turned on and powered up, the selected weapons come to life kinetically using the patented HEXBUG Nano vibration technology. As the battles rage on, each robot’s jabs activate an onboard Shock Sensor causing the Damage Indicator Light to blink more rapidly as the Warrior’s health decreases. Ultimately, only one HEXBUG Warrior Battling Robot is left standing victorious on the Battle Arena or Stadium.

Beginning today, HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots are marching into retail stores nationwide including Walmart, Target, Toys“R”Us and RadioShack, among others. In September, they will also be available in Canada and the United Kingdom exclusively at Toys“R”Us stores. Kicking off the launch, HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots will be showcased and demoed at two highly influential mom blog events being held in New York, NY, coinciding with the BlogHer 2012 conference, on August 2 hosted by The Big Toy Book and on August 3 hosted by BSM Media.

New HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots now available include:

  • HEXBUG Warriors Battling Robots – Kids can operate their HEXBUG Warriors in Training Mode, with unlimited health, for scrimmages and testing purposes. Once the Warriors are equipped and ready for battle, they can be powered into Match Mode and are set to enter into competition, where they crash, jab and jostle with their opponents until they win or lose by running out of health at which point they deactivate. Once put in Match Mode, each robot’s Shock Sensor activates its Damage Indicator Light which changes colors from green to red and blinks more rapidly as its health decreases. There are 12 assorted HEXBUG Warrior Battling Robots Single packs available for fans to collect. Each Single pack includes 1 fully-armored Warrior. MSRP is $7.99 and the product is CPSIA approved for kids ages 6 and up.
  • HEXBUG Warriors Battle Arena – The battle arena is the perfect stage for HEXBUG Warriors students to hone their skills.  It comes with two HEXBUG Warriors with weapons and armor, two expandable battle arena pieces (compatible with Battle Stadium), three standoffs and extra bonus armor. There are four assorted HEXBUG Warrior Battle Arenas available for fans to collect.  Each features a different opposing pair of Warriors. MSRP is $19.99 and the product is CPSIA approved for kids ages 6 and up.
  • HEXBUG Warriors Battle Stadium – The ultimate large scale battleground for all HEXBUG Warriors students comes with two fully-armored collectible HEXBUG Warriors, eight Battle Stadium Pieces (compatible with Battle Arena) and 12 standoffs. There are two assorted HEXBUG Warrior Battle Stadiums available for fans to collect. Each features a different opposing pair of Warriors. MSRP is $29.99 and the product is CPSIA approved for kids ages 6 and up.

For more information on their fierce futuristic rivalry, visit www.hexbug.com/warriors.

PR Contact:

Esther Rawlings, Cohn & Wolfe; Esther.Rawlings@cohnwolfe.com; 310-967-2953

About HEXBUG and Innovation First:

HEXBUG® is a product line developed by Innovation First Inc., and distributed and marketed by Innovation First Labs, Inc., both wholly owned subsidiaries of privately held Innovation First International, Inc.  The company was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs. Innovation First began developing electronics for unmanned mobile ground robots and is now an industry leader in research and development for the hobby, competition, education and toy markets.

Innovation First International’s three main subsidiaries, VEX Robotics, Inc., Innovation First Labs, Inc. (makers of HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures), and RackSolutions, Inc. span the education, consumer and business-to-business markets. The VEX® Robotics Design System is the leading platform for middle school and high school education and competitive robotics. Leveraging the company’s core competency in electrical and mechanical engineering, the RackSolutions® division works closely with all major computer OEMs to provide custom mounting solutions and industry-wide rack compatibility for data installations of all sizes.

In 2009 the company added offices in Hong Kong, China and the United Kingdom to better serve the global marketplace. This network was expanded to Canada in 2010 with the addition of an office, warehouse and distribution center located in Toronto. With an advanced in-house metal fabrication plant, distribution center and corporate office located together in a 13-acre complex in Greenville, Texas, the company is poised to continue on a rapid growth path. Please visit www.innovationfirst.com for additional information.

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INNOVATION FIRST LABS APPOINTS NEW VP OF SALES TO LEAD TOY DIVISION NATIONAL ACCOUNTS

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Paul Warner to Head Up National Sales for Company’s Expanding Toy Division Including HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures and Bobble BotsTM Brands

GREENVILLE, Texas – February 10, 2012 – Innovation First Labs, Inc. masterminds behind the internationally recognized HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures and new Bobble BotsTM consumer toy brands, today officially announced the appointment of sales and marketing veteran Paul Warner as vice president of sales for national accounts including Toys“R”Us, K- Mart and Costco. In his new role, Warner will oversee US sales and account operations for the toy divisions growing product lines.

“Paul Warner has the recognized talent and business relationships in the market that we need to spear-head some of our largest retail accounts as we dynamically expand our consumer toy product lines,” said Chris Troyak, president of Innovation First Labs, Inc. “His qualifications include a thorough understanding of the business, with proven success in marketing, sales and purchasing for the industry’s leading toy brands.”

Warner joins the team with more than 30 years of sales, marketing, and purchasing experience, having served in executive positions at companies including Mega Brands, Rose Art, Mega Bloks and MGA Entertainment. Most recently, Warner served as an independent sales and marketing representative for PAWTOYS, LLC, an independent sales force representing lines including Meccano Erector. Prior to PAWTOYS, Warner served as vice president of sales at Mega Brands of America, where he led a sales team for multiple categories, including Mega Bloks, Rose Art, and Magnetix. He also spent three years as senior vice president of sales for MGA Entertainment, where he boosted the business and profitability of electronic and licensed toys for lead brands including the popular Bratz dolls line.

About Innovation First Labs, Inc.:

Innovation First Labs, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of privately held Innovation First International, Inc. The company was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs. Innovation First International’s three main subsidiaries, VEX Robotics, Inc., Innovation First Labs, Inc. (makers of HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures), and RackSolutions, Inc. span the education, consumer and business-to-business markets. For more information visit www.bobblebots.com.

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Innovation First Unleashes New HEXBUG® Robotic Species and Enhanced Nano Habitat Sets for the Holidays

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

Highly Anticipated HEXBUG Larva, HEXBUG Nano Habitat Sets and Collectible Limited Edition Nano Bugs Amass at Retailers Nationwide and HEXBUG.com

GREENVILLE, Texas – Aug. 2, 2011 – Today, Innovation First Labs, Inc., creator of the internationally recognized HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures brand, revealed its exciting new back to school and holiday product line-up, designed to further unlock kids’ creative potential and reinforce learning through imaginative playtime. New fall and winter products include the Nano Hive Habitat Set for kids on the go, a slithering new HEXBUG Larva, the re-designed TIA Specialty Toy of the Year Nano Habitat Set featuring the Construct System, and two jaw-dropping limited edition HEXBUG Nano bugs outfitted for Halloween and the Holiday season with festive features and packaging.

“We are constantly developing fun and innovative ways for our customers to push their creative boundaries using HEXBUG products, and we fully intend on becoming an industry iconic brand and a staple kids toy for many years to come” said Chris Troyak, president of Innovation First Labs, Inc. “It is our customers passionate ingenuity that puts a healthy pressure on our engineers to design these playful new products that further stimulate open-ended creativity just in time for the back to school and holiday season.”

HEXBUG Micro Robotic Creatures and the collection of expandable and customizable HEXBUG Nano habitat sets ignite kids’ interest in science and technology as well as foster their creativity to fuel hours of imaginative playtime.  Starting mid-August through December a series of new mechanical robotic bugs, Nano habitat sets and accessories, and limited edition Nano bugs will scurry into specialty and major retailers nationwide including Walmart, Target, Toys“R”Us and RadioShack among others.  These items will also be showcased at two influential mom blog events being held in San Diego, CA, coinciding with the BlogHer 2011 conference, on August 4 hosted by The Big Toy Book and on August 6 hosted by BSM Media.

New HEXBUG fall and winter 2011 products include:

●      HEXBUG Nano Hive Habitat Set – For kids on the go, HEXBUG introduces the first transportable environment that enables HEXBUG Nano architects to customize the design within a Habitat Set system.  Each Hive Habitat Set unfolds to feature a center ramp for the Nano to freely access multiple levels and a floor spotted with attachment points where kids can pop in their choice of new playground accessories.  Kids can personalize their playground by repositioning the pegs and rotatable flags which direct the HEXBUG Nano toward ramps or other obstacles, including a seesaw and a merry-go-round, for the playfully energetic critters to explore. CPSIA approved for kids 3 and up; MSRP: $34.99; Available mid-August/September at retailers nationwide and online at www.hexbug.com.

●      HEXBUG Larva – This captivating new addition to the HEXBUG family slithers forward on smooth surfaces using a slow, rhythmic flexing motion.  Just like real larvae, each of these creepy crawlers reacts to its environment, instinctively changing direction upon sensing an object in its path and wriggling off to explore a clear, undisturbed path ahead – a behavior that is eerily mesmerizing to watch and interact with. CPSIA approved for kids 8 and up; MSRP; $14.99; Available mid-August/September at retailers nationwide and online at www.hexbug.com.

●      New! HEXBUG Nano Habitat Set Featuring the Construct System – Enhancing the HEXBUG Nano Habitat Set that received the TIA Specialty Toy of the Year Award in 2011, the new set is updated with the Construct Habitat System and now features new modular parts and accessories to extend creative playtime.  The floor of each Hex Cell now comes spotted with attachment points where kids can insert the playground accessory of their choice including pegs, adjustable flags, a seesaw, a merry-go-round and vertical and horizontal rollers.  The newly designed Hex Cells also come with removable walls so multiple cells can be connected to one another to create vast and diverse environments. CPSIA approved for kids 3 and up; MSRP: $29.99; Available this October at Target stores nationwide and online at www.hexbug.com.

●      Limited Edition HEXBUG Nano – Following the success of the limited edition HEXBUG Nano Easter Egg sold exclusively at RadioShack, will be the release of two new limited edition holiday bugs.  For Halloween, the new Halloween Zombie Nano will rise to the occasion from coffin-shaped packaging and a glow in the dark exoskeleton, to make sure kids are happily trick-or-shrieking.  Then, just in time for tree trimming, the Holiday Ornament Nano will make its debut outfitted with reindeer antlers and packaged in a festive ornament. CPSIA approved for kids 3 and up; MSRP: $5.99.  The Halloween Zombie Nano will be available this September at RadioShack stores nationwide, and the Holiday Ornament Nano will be available this November at Target and RadioShack stores nationwide.

About HEXBUG and Innovation First:

HEXBUG® is a product line developed by Innovation First Inc., and distributed and marketed by Innovation First Labs, Inc., both wholly owned subsidiaries of privately held Innovation First International, Inc.  The company was founded on the belief that innovation very early in the design process is necessary to produce simple and elegant product designs.  Innovation First began developing electronics for unmanned mobile ground robots and is now an industry leader in research and development for the hobby, competition, education and toy markets.

Innovation First International’s three main subsidiaries, VEX Robotics, Inc., Innovation First Labs, Inc. (makers of HEXBUG® Micro Robotic Creatures), and RackSolutions, Inc. span the education, consumer and business-to-business markets.  The VEX® Robotics Design System is the leading platform for middle school and high school education and competitive robotics.  Leveraging the company’s core competency in electrical and mechanical engineering, the RackSolutions® division works closely with all major computer OEMs to provide custom mounting solutions and industry-wide rack compatibility for data installations of all sizes.

In the 2009 the company added offices in Hong Kong, China and the United Kingdom to better serve the global marketplace.  This network was expanded to Canada in 2010 with the addition of an office, warehouse and distribution center located in Toronto.  With an advanced in-house metal fabrication plant, distribution center and corporate office located together in a 13-acre complex in Greenville, Texas, the company is poised to continue on a rapid growth path.  Please visit www.innovationfirst.com for additional information.

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