Encyclopedia > Matchbox

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Matchbox is a die cast cars and airplanes trademark started in 1952 by the Lesney Toys[?] company.

Matchbox is so named because of the small boxes in which the products are packed, like those for matches.

During the 1980s, Matchbox switched to the more conventional, plastic and cardboard wrapping style other die cast car trademarks use. During this time, Matchbox also tried a hand in the die cast airplanes area, under the name Matchbox Sky Busters. Sky Busters produced plane models for such airlines as Aeromexico, Air France, British Airways, Iberia, Lufthansa and Saudi Arabian Airlines.

In 1999, Matchbox was sold over to Mattel, meaning that its long time rivalty with Hot Wheels[?] was basically over, because now they are sister trademarks. In 2002, Matchbox Sky Busters made a comeback, but with Continental Airlines as the only major airline to sponsor the product. Matchbox also came out in '02 with a line of cars to celebrate their 50th anniversary.

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