As a result of declines in its girls, boys and American Girl brands—and the Disney Princess doll license moving to Hasbro—Mattel has reported a 1% drop in global gross sales to US$962.1 million.
Mattel’s adjusted operating loss of US$36 million in Q1 is a 146% increase from a year ago when the company posted an operating loss of US$14.6 million.
Worldwide gross sales for Mattel’s girls and boys brands fell by 8% to US$527.9 million, compared to the same period last year. Barbie sales remained flat at US$141 million. But gross sales for other girls brands were down 58% to US$72.4 million. Meanwhile, American Girl, which offers American-Girl branded products directly to consumers, saw an 11% decline in gross sales to US$93.3 million.
This is also Mattel’s first quarter without the Disney Princess doll license, valued at more than US$450 million in annual sales. Hasbro took control of the license in January. And not surprisingly, the Pawtucket, Rhode Island-based toyco saw the biggest gains in Q1 on the girls side of its business. Revenue from its girls products skyrocketed by 41% to US$165.4 million, thanks in large part to the launch of Disney Princess Frozen fashion dolls and small dolls.
Nonetheless, Mattel did make strides in its construction and arts & crafts business, which includes the Mega Bloks and RoseArt brands. Gross sales for the quarter in that segment shot up 78% to US$61.9 million. And Mattel’s entertainment business, including Radica and Games, also made significant gains, with a 36% increase in gross sales to US$179.4 million.
Additionally, Mattel’s classic lines continue to be cash cows, with both its wheels business, which includes the Hot Wheels and Matchbox brands, and Fisher-Price brands (Fisher-Price Core, Fisher-Price Friends and Power Wheels) posting 9% increases in gross sales, to US$135 million and US$272.6 million, respectively.
In related recent news, Mattel has enlisted renowed designed Jonathan Adler to bring a contemporary look to its preschool Fisher-Price toys in an effort to boost the brand’s popularity with millennial parents.