Hornby to focus on Corgi core business

Hornby is planning to heavily invest in iconic model brand Corgi following its takeover of the company. It will focus on its core business as well as developing new lines, including sports models to attract new collectors.

Hornby bought Corgi, its intellectual property and entire back catalogue of moulds in a deal worth £7.5m in May.

Corgi’s key marketing, sales and product development teams have been re-tained and will move back to the company’s former offices in Leicester this week.

Alex Balzaretti, general manager Corgi, says the firm will concentrate on its core product of diecast models, while taking advantage of Hornby-owned brands to build new markets.

She says that the brand had become diluted and had experienced supply problems, but would now concentrate on its core business of aviation, road and rail models.

But she adds that Corgi will aim to attract a new generation of enthusiasts. “Our job is to keep the brand alive and we need to stimulate new collectors.

“One area we are looking to break into is motorsport,” she explains.

Corgi is looking at developing a racing range, branded by driver. Hornby already owns racing toy brand Scalextric, which has a deal with Lewis Hamilton.

Balzaretti adds that Corgi may also expand into Europe, providing special continental themed liveries for its models and working with Hornby subsidiaries on the continent.

The 6,500 moulds included in the deal give Hornby access to a number of valuable properties, including models for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, the entire James Bond series and the A-Team.

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