My ex-employers Hasbro have been in the new for three announcements in the last week:

Firstly, they announced the acquisition of D&D Beyond from Fandom. This is in effect an acquisition of a collection of fans of the brand via a popular web portal. Clearly new Hasbro CEO Chris Cocks has a deep understanding of the Wizards of the Coast business, and all thinks Strategy and online gaming, and that is reflected in the company’s first major acquisition under Mr. Cocks’ stewardship.

Next Hasbro announced two key appointments – Shane Azzi joins the company from Kimberley Clark as Chief Global Supply Chain Officer, and Matt Austin is promoted to Chief Commercial Officer. These job titles may sound a little bland, but they are key roles in driving the company forward – supply chain is obviously the major challenge for any consumer products business currently, and the Chief Commercial Officer at a major stock market listed company like Hasbro has responsibility for making sure shipments meet market expectations, which is a highly pressured position. Again, we can see the impact and control of Hasbro’s new CEO in these senior level appointments.

Finally, this week (so far at least!), Hasbro reported Q1 results. Bearing in mind the stellar performance of the US toy market in 2021, and Hasbro’s super strong full year in 2021, it will be particularly hard for the company to deliver growth again in a high inflation environment where consumers have less disposable income to spend on such fripperies as toys! Nevertheless, Hasbro reported revenue growth of 6% for Q1 2022 vs 2021 (allowing for a $17m unfavourable FX move). Operating profit was down for the quarter, but Q1 is not the most critical for driving profitability. Overall, Hasbro made good progress in Q1 against the backdrop of a stellar 2021 which was always going to be hard to match let alone beat and extremely difficult times.


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