Group sales increased despite the pandemic and a new warehouse and strong range introductions mean the group has a positive outlook.
The annual report highlights that the Simba Dickie Group’s business activity during 2020 was heavily influenced by the impact of the pandemic. During this period, suitable hygiene concepts to protect employees at the various companies of the international group were developed and constantly adapted to the ever-changing conditions. The management team responded to the changing situation, both organisationally and financially, by taking appropriate measures. CFO, Manfred Duschl, commented: “It is therefore all the more pleasing that, despite this completely new situation, the Simba Dickie Group was able to increase its consolidated sales in 2020 by 1.8%, compared to the previous year, to €715m.” Consolidated sales in 2019 totalled €702.3m.
Sales expanded in the core German market, in the US and in other European markets. As a result of lockdown measures, a shift towards eCommerce was seen throughout Europe, and a change in the ordering behaviour of customers led to a shift from direct imports from Hong Kong to domestic substitutes.
International sales make up 75% of the group’s earnings. Thanks to increased business dealings in the US, the Dickie Group, along with Jada Toys, was able to significantly boost consolidated sales by 4.5% from €194.7m in 2019 to €203.4m. The Smoby Group was more severely affected due to the enforced closure of its production facilities in France for several weeks, and consequently saw sales drop from €101.3m to €95.7m in 2020. Spain and Poland, as well as South Africa, India and the Middle East, experienced a fall in sales Consolidated sales at foreign subsidiaries fell overall from €207.3m in 2019 to €195m in 2020. The main export destinations in 2020 were once again France, Italy and the USA.
Manfred Duschl added: “The coronavirus pandemic will continue to challenge us in 2021. In addition, there will be economic consequences resulting from the pandemic. Against this backdrop and the as-yet unforeseeable financial impact, the Simba Dickie Group plans to maintain consolidated sales in 2021 at the 2020 level of €715m.”
Overall investment in 2020 was roughly €55m. Of this, approximately €15m was invested in tools for new products and approximately €5m in new machinery and mechanical equipment. Further significant investments and initiatives in 2020 included new warehousing facilities that have now come into operation, and the acquisition of a significant stake in Dutch company Exit Toys in November 2020. Continued investment in machinery at all the group’s production facilities is planned for 2021.
The group’s product range now comprises more than 4,000 items, from the popular Big Bobby Car and Schuco collector’s models to dress-up doll Steffi Love from Simba Toys, wooden building blocks from Eichhorn and toy cars from Majorette and Dickie Toys.
2021 will see the introduction of an extensive array of new lines, including high quality outdoor products from Exit Toys (pictured), Zoch brand children’s games and board games, Steffi Love dolls, 2-in-1 Pamper Petz, the Lucille Interactive doll from Corolle, highly detailed trucks from Dickie Toys, Fast & Furious die-cast and RC Marvel heroes from Jada Toys, and a Volvo tie-up for Majorette, as well as new construction vehicles and unboxing range Tune Ups.