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  • Subject area(s): Marketing
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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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When Frank Hornby founded the company, his vision was to make improvements in Toy or Educational Devices for Children and Young People. And nowadays, Hornby Hobbies Limited's vision is to be the most successful model, hobby, and collectable toy company in the world.


The mission of Hornby Hobbies Ltd is to keep building on the huge passion amongst their existing enthusiasts and also engage the new audiences for their hobby and toy products.


The Group's principal business is the development, production and supply of hobby and toy products for a global market. The Group distributes its products through a network of specialists and through its online activities and multiple retailers throughout the UK and overseas.

Broad Aims and Objectives

The objectives of Hornby Hobbies Ltd are to establish the necessary platform for sustained and profitable growth. Besides, building coherent, global brand propositions within a long-term strategic framework to keep the enthusiasts' passion. Besides, to keep a much more engaging relationship with the consumers, they built up website and social media platforms, their consumers have an appetite for this information, and they have to continue to develop those innovative ways to feed the enthusiasts' enthusiasm.

Base on Research and Development Product Innovation, Hornby Hobbies Ltd is investing on starting to bear fruit as they had not seen the firmness and quality of supply. To find out the clear area of opportunity, they did a product development and consumer research. Besides, they were retooling programme of the starter kits of the Airfix series to enhance the consumers' first experience of Airfix.  And they produced a combination of silver and gold coloured Corgi models to celebrate the 50th anniversary.

Building brand Management and Enhancement, retaining and recruiting the best talent is very important and they are resolute in not compromising when assembling the team Hornby requires to meet their future ambitions. The talent team managed the manufacturing base continue to develop, skilled at balancing the competing commercial issues when exercising long-term partnerships with existing and new businesses.  The team are also need to resolve the supply chain issues, increasing the logistics plan, putting effort on the new ERP system implementation.

Developing Key Partnerships, Hornby Hobbies Ltd is trying to focus on bringing new manufacturers into production and improving Quality Assurance and Control processes to assist in managing the efficiency and effectiveness of their production schedules. Besides, they are developing Critical Path programme and Tooling Database tools to help improving the scheduling and communication with our vendor network.


2.3 External Environmental Analysis

The changes in macro environment will inevitably affect on the company. PESTEL analysis can help to estimate external forces.

Political Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- During the the World War I, UK implemented the trade embargo, German producers can not export their products to the UK, it created an opportunity for the UK manufacturers including Hornby.

- Before the early years of World War II, Hornby had added military vehicles to the range of the model cars, trucks and buses. After the war the range amounted to around 300 vehicles, it helped a lot to wide the range of models.

Economic Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- In 1991, there was economic recession caught up with Hornby, it's turnover fell back to £32 million from a high of £40 million in 1990. When the industry trading deficit increased, price competition may take place.

- Recovery after recession and economic downturn, the cost may rise but the prices may fall.

- When the GDP growth, the company can be disposable income growth.


Social Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- In 1982 the demand for traditional toys and games was hit by the growing popularity of electronic toys and home computers, the children switched from ‘traditional' toys and games to music, video and computer games at relatively young ages.

- In 1980s to 1990s, the birth rate of children growth, so the market potential may also growth.

- The children nowadays is more mature and savvy, Hornby have to produce more educational or interactive toy products.

Technological Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- The easy Internet access and high Internet penetration, Hornby may need to move to electric game or add virtual element to the car.

- There are high power of substitutes, people tend to use computer or mobile as their entertainment than the traditional toys.

Environmental Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- National regulations to promote safer toys for children and there is restrictions in marketing to children. Although the mainly targeted consumes of Hornby are adults and parents, they had to be careful about in marketing to children so as not to damage to company reputation in case of offence.

Legal Factors Affecting The Hornby Hobbies Ltd.

- The minimum wage guarantee system in UK cause the high costs, so Hornby switched all remaining manufacturing from Margate to two Chinese factories in 2000.

Although we are difficult to control the external environment, it creates some new opportunities for the company.

2.4 Internal Environmental Analysis

The resource-based view can help to analyse the core competencies of a company.


- Patents: Hornby Hobbies always applies the patents for the new technology to protect its advantage.

- Product: Hornby owns 7 brands and product ranges including Hornby, Scalextric, Corgi, Airfix, Humbrol, Lima and Electrotren. Only railway brand encounters some 650 products.


- Brand name: the brand of “Hornby” & “Maccano” appeared over a century, and Hornby Hobbies is now a largest toy industry in UK.

- Innovation: Hornby always produces new parts or accessories for the train sets to provide the consumer more choice.

- Focus on high quality standards: the labour-intensive and costs in the UK were high when there was an requirement of the quality, so Hornby switched the  manufacturing from Margate to two Chinese factories. However, the lower hourly wage cost didn't let the costs decrease, because Hornby used more Chinese employees to hence the details and quality of each models.

- Product design creativity: Hornby would produce some limited edition models such as changing the color in combination of silver and gold for collection.

- Technology: From the first 0 gauge electric trains to 00 gauge one, and until nowadays, it developed to “N” gauge.


- Expertise in organization: Frank recuited Beardsley who was an expert in operations and George Jones who was a salesman to stay with the business.

- Efficient supply chain: Hornby is keeping to find different suppliers to provide the firmness and quality of supply

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