A tale of two companies – Mattel and Hasbro

Published on: 18th September 2023

Following the Mattel and Hasbro CEOs speaking at a recent Goldman Sachs conference, Richard Gottlieb examines how different the talk and the walk were between the two toy industry powerhouses.

Richard Gottlieb is the founder and CEO of Global Toy Experts, a consultancy to US and international toy companies. He is also the publisher of Global Toy News, a web-based magazine founded in 2009 that covers toy industry news and provides resources to the toy industry. Richard co-hosts The Playground Podcast and publishes The Toy Intelligencer report. Here, he shares one of his latest columns with Toy World readers:

Goldman Sachs, an investment banking company, invited the Mattel and Hasbro CEOs to speak at its Communacopia and Technology conference.

Mattel went into the conference with a big win from its Barbie movie. The film is the top-grossing film of 2023, and 2023 isn’t over yet. Therefore, it is unsurprising that much of CEO Ynon Kreiz’s presentation focused on Mattel brands, television, and movies.

Ynon outlined upcoming films involving Mattel IP, plus a growing television slate. Mattel looks like a toy company well on its way to becoming a media company.

While the Mattel CEO came in with a strong tail wind from Barbie, Hasbro CEO Chris Cocks, was facing a headwind from the sale of eOne, its entertainment division.

Instead of touting its media plans, Hasbro made the case for concentrating on being a toy and game company. Chris stated: “I am a passionate believer in the power of games and, more generally, the power of play, to build relationships with consumers. I think that has been the secret sauce of Hasbro for the hundred year we’ve been in business.”

Two companies in the same industry, with similar revenue figures, are taking divergent paths.

To read the rest of Richard’s article, click here.


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