Sales are down at Fisher-Price, but Mattel believes robust growth is on the horizon.
Fisher-Price’s worldwide gross sales slipped 3 percent to $396.7 million as parent company Mattel Inc.’s second-quarter profits dropped 24 percent.
Fisher-Price Brands’ results were “not unexpected,” according to Geoff Walker, the company’s executive vice president who leads its East Aurora and New York City offices.
“Clearly, this brand remains a work in progress,” said Bryan Stockton, chairman and CEO of Mattel, in an earnings conference call Wednesday. “As we’ve said before, this is the year we plan to grow Fisher-Price.”
Mattel plans to increase global sales of Fisher-Price products with new packaging, innovative products, better execution in stores and more marketing around its “joy of learning” campaign in order to “not only connect with mom, but to more consistently convert mom,” Stockton said.
“Our Fisher-Price Friends toy lines continue to do very well, with our core product well-positioned for a fall uptick,” Walker said.
Fisher-Price also expects its Little People Disney Princess Klip Klop Stable, Laugh & Learn Crawl Around Car and Imaginext Mega Apatosaurus to do well when they hit shelves this fall.
Mattel said the company was hurt by a continued slide in Barbie sales and a $14 million write-down on the toymaker’s Polly Pocket line.
It was the fourth straight quarter of sales declines for Barbie, and Mattel executives said their Monster High and other girls doll lines were likely taking away some sales from the 54-year-old fashion doll. Monster High dolls, which are based on teen characters that are offspring of famous monsters, have been a huge hit for Mattel since they were introduced in 2010. Sales have grown to more than $500 million in just three years of existence, while Barbie annual sales are about $1.3 billion, said Gerrick Johnson of BMO Capital Markets.
Other doll lines including American Girl and Disney Princesses have been performing well too.
“We’ve introduced new franchises that have fueled significant category growth for the industry,” said CEO Bryan Stockton “The Barbie brand is likely being modestly impacted by their successes.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report. email: