James R. Becker

James R. Becker was a pioneer in the global toy and game licensing industry with objects of play that resonated with children and adults around the world.

Early Days

Launched career in toy industry in 1960, with American Metal Specialties Corporation (AMSCO), selling reality-based toys for children designed to mirror adult life.

Founded the Stamford, Connecticut-based Anjar, an international toy and game licensing agency named for his four sons Arto, Neil, Jonathan, and Roger in 1969.


Anjar was a pioneer in global licensing, now an $80 billion industry, by recognizing the revenue potential of line extensions based on existing brands.

Becker licensed from countries such as Japan and the United Kingdom, focusing on brands with broad appeal that would resonate with North American consumers.

Objects of Play

Anjar has licensed more than 1,000 toys and games, such as:

  • Magic (Disappearing) Baby Bottle
  • Gumby and Pokey
  • Barrel of Monkeys
  • Shirt Pocket Games and Puzzles
  • Othello
  • Play ’n Carry Dollhouse
  • Nerf Ping Pong
  • Take 5
  • Breaking Point
  • Battle Dome

Anjar is the exclusive licensing agent for well-known brands such as Wham-O, Sophie la Girafe, Anne Geddes, and Steve Kaufman.


James Becker received the International Designers & Inventors of Toys award in 2005.

He was recognized with a TAGIE award in 2011.

The Toy Association inducted Becker into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame in 2018. Anjar continues to thrive under the leadership of Becker’s son and daughter-in-law, Jonathan and Patty Becker.