Hot Wheels and Barbie still lead Mattel’s Q2 growth as pre-school sees decline

Mattel might still be losing money, but things are looking far from over for the California-based toymaker who recently painted an optimistic picture with for its multi-year turnaround plans with its latest second quarter results.

Net sales increased 2 per cent to $860.1 million compared to the $840.7 million in 2018, while operating loss decreased to $51.4 million from the somewhat more sizeable losses of $189.2 million last year.

Mattel continues to show a strong performance across a number of segments, while classic brands Hot Wheels and Barbie carve out performance leads. The firm’s gain in action figures, building sets, and games (a 21 per cent bump) was driven in large by early sales of product from Disney-Pixar’s Toy Story 4.

“We delivered top-line growth in our North American and International segments across all regions, as well as growth in all categories except one,” said Mattel’s chairman and CEO, Ynon Kriez.

Among those brands that struggled this quarter, Mattel’s American Girl continued to plummet, with a decline of 22 per cent, while worldwide gross sales in infant, toddler and pre-school fell 13 per cent, with declines across Fisher-Price, Fisher-Price Friends and Thomas & Friends.

A decline in Jurassic World vehicles and Disney’s Cars was substantially off-set by growth in Mattel’s Hot Wheels brand, that, according to reports, saw its best second quarter in the brand’s history, with an increase of 10 per cent.

The European market may well be in for an increase in Hot Wheels product sales when the Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live tour lands this side of the Atlantic next year.

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