Shortage of cartoon baby JJ dolls due to supply chain chaos sparks Christmas panic
He’s known for calmly singing educational songs to pre-school children – but cartoon baby JJ has sparked panic among parents.
Dolls of the star of YouTube children’s show CoComelon have topped Christmas wishlists but are running short because of the supply chain chaos, threatening to leave desperate parents hunting for the must-have toys and paying double the price.
Delays in the global shipping industry caused by the pandemic have combined with a shortage of HGV drivers to slow up deliveries of goods worldwide.
CoComelon is the world’s second largest YouTube channel – with 122 million subscribers – behind Indian music channel T-Series.
Dolls of the star of YouTube’s CoComelon have topped Christmas wishlists but are running short because of the supply chain chaos, threatening to leave parents paying double the price
The three-minute episodes feature JJ and his family and friends singing nursery rhymes and educational songs about everything from threading popcorn to make a decoration and washing hands.
Children can sing along to songs with the 12in interactive doll, which can also be fed and clothed.
They are sold at chains including Argos, Smyths Toys and The Entertainer and typically cost about £40.
However, some are being listed on eBay for as much as £79.99 as shoppers scramble for the popular character.
Gary Grant, founder of toy chain The Entertainer, said: ‘The CoComelon toys are the range most at risk of running out completely. It was the first year we’ve stocked them, so it was hard to gauge how much stock was needed.
Delays in the shipping industry caused by the pandemic have combined with a shortage of HGV drivers to slow up deliveries of goods worldwide. Pictured: Shipping containers in Suffolk
‘They have been incredibly popular, particularly the JJ interactive character. We have one more delivery coming in ten days’ time and then the next one won’t arrive in time – it’s looking like the 28th.’
JJ was named after Jay Jeon, founder of Treasure Studio, which created CoComelon.
The film-maker collaborated with his wife, a children’s author, to launch CoComelon as ABCkidTV in California in 2006.
The videos started out as alphabet songs before broadening out to nursery rhymes and original songs with the tagline ‘Be happy and smart’.
The brand is estimated to generate more than £90 million a year and was bought by global entertainment company Moonbug last year.
It has been described as the ‘next Peppa Pig’, the cartoon show that has spawned books, films and a theme park in the New Forest visited by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.