Hasbro misses estimates, but promises full year rise

A disappointing last quarter saw Hasbro miss analysts estimates, but the firm is still confident of a strong 2011.
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The company, which missed sales estimates in the key fourth quarter on slow US demand for games and puzzles, forecast a rise in sales and profits in 2011.

For the full-year 2010, the company reported revenue of $4bn, compared to $4.07bn in 2009 and profits of $397.8 million - a rise of six per cent.

Sales of Nerf foam toys and Monopoly fell seven per cent to $1.28bn in the quarter, missing analysts' average estimate of $1.3bn. Sales of games and puzzles segment fell 22 per cent.

"We believe the revenue shortfall was due to a convergence of a few negative factors late in the final quarter of the year and is not emblematic of our long-term business, which remains on track for growth in 2011 and beyond," chief executive, Brian Goldner, said.

Goldner blamed some of the weakness on Hasbro's marketing programs.

"We have this great big broad portfolio of games and yet our messages were probably too diffuse, too numerous, and didn't have the impact," Goldner said, adding the company was working to make changes "immediately.

"In 2012, we have quite a good lineup. Obviously we are very excited about ... the restaging and reinvention of Star Wars in 2012 in 3D, coming sometime early in the year," added Goldner.

In the fourth quarter, Hasbro's net profit fell to $140m from $165.6m a year earlier.

Hasbro's international sales rose 12 per cent in the quarter covering the key holiday selling season even as US demand for games fell late in the year.

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