Hasbro CEO cites eSports as major boost to business

Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner has cited eSports as a major boost to the firm’s business in an interview with CNBC’s Jim Cramer.

Magic the Gathering and Dungeons & Dragons are both popular games on the streaming platform Twitch, which has seen thousands of new players introduced to the games. D&D in particular has seen a resurgence on Hasbro’s own specialty Twitch channel.

"Both ‘Magic: The Gathering’ and ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ are on our Twitch programming," Goldner told the show Mad Money on Monday. "About a million people a month are watching Magic tournaments online. eSports and the Twitch audience that are very supportive of these brands."

"We’ll talk with our analysts next week about our ‘Magic Digital Next’ platform, where we’re launching the next generation of ‘Magic’ online play," added Goldner in reference to Hasbro’s Investor Day on August 3. "’Magic’ is a very powerful brand online. We need to build a bigger platform, [a] more robust platform, and we’ve been at that for a while and we’re going to show our analysts just how we’re going to launch this."

The popularity of 80s throwback TV series Stranger Things which features multiple references to D&D also played a part in bringing this brand back into the public consciousness.

Goldner highlighted Q4 as the true signifier of the company’s success in 2017 with the launch of several high-profile movie tie-ins on the horizon including My Little Pony and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. 

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