Johnny Lightning brand was established in 1969 and sold by Topper Toys until when it ceased its production in 1971. The brand was revived by Thomas E. Lowe in 1994, who founded an umbrella company Playing Mantis. In 2004, Lowe sold Playing Mantis to RC2 which was formed by Ertl and Racing Champions. RC2 was then sold to Tomy in 2011. Subsequently, in 2013, Tomy discontinued Johnny Lightning brand. In 2016, Round 2 LLC bought the rights for Johnny Lightning from Tomy and the brand was revived again.