Small Business Spotlight: Long Island Toy Company Is More Than Just Fun And Games

Joe Connolly
December 25, 2019 - 5:00 am

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- In this week's Small Business Spotlight sponsored by BNB Bank -- "Community Banking From Montauk To Manhattan," Joe Connolly meets Matt Nuccio of Design Edge, Inc.

The Long Island-based toy and game development company works with some big name toy companies including Hasbro, Mattel and Fisher Price to develop and license products, namely Barbie and Spiderman.

"Large toy companies will hire us to work on projects like redoing Trivial Pursuit, which we worked on some packaging and some redesign," Nuccio said. "They'll get a new movie license or something and they'll have us read the script and then we'll have to just develop blindly things that may work within the toy range, but on the other side we also invent and license our own thing. So I might wake up in the middle of the night with an idea, scribble it down, next day come into the office, build a prototype, make a quick video and present it to a toy company and license it."

Nuccio grew up in the business. When he was about 14 years old, his parents started the company out of their garage, originally as a package design firm focused on toys.

"Right out the gate they were getting a lot of work and we grew pretty quickly and by the time I was out of college about 1997 I was ready to sort of take the reins, worked alongside them for a while, now they're semi-retired," Nuccio said.

Design Edge grew from a package design firm to becoming the backend operations for about a dozen small toy companies that handles developing, packaging, marketing, manufacturing, logistics and getting the final product to retail.

The company has seen a lot of success with toys that also educate, such as its Toy of the Year-nominated Storytime Theater, but they have also worked on action figures and other things that are just "pure fun," including board games, which Nuccio says have made a huge comeback over the last few years.

"If you had asked me 15 years ago what I thought of that category I would've told you it's dying, but now there's more of a need for social interaction than there's ever been and people have been setting up parties around games," Nuccio said. "It's that Trivial Pursuit generation that now has kids and they remember all that fun they had with their friends. And then on top of that it's not just for the kids -- it's couples getting together, it's families getting together."

Watch the video above to see how Nuccio's company takes toy and game ideas to the shelves.