Mattel have this week reported strong figures for Q1 2022. Net sales in what is normally a fairly sleepy quarter were up 19% year on year at $1,041m. Reported operating income was up by $46million, or 136% hitting $80m for the quarter.

Many people are expecting 2022 to be tough overall with high inflation predicted to dampen down consumer demand, but despite the inflationary environment Mattel delivered this quarter. The company has reported their expectation of 8-10% growth in ‘constant currency’ for full year 2022 at this point. Mattel obviously has some massive advantages in their owning some of the strongest brands in the industry in Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher Price, but nevertheless it’s a strong start to 2022 by Mattel.

Looking further forward, Mattel have also announced that J. J. Abrams Bad Robot will produce a live action Hot Wheels movie in conjunction with Warner Bros. Additionally, Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots will also get a live action movie via Universal and Vin Diesel. These movies mark Mattel’s 12th in production. On the Q1 earnings call, CEO Ynon Kreiz also confirmed that their latest Barbie TV movie is performing very well on recent release on the Netflix platform.

Going back 5 years or so, it seemed like Mattel had lost some lustre, some of what had driven the company to success for so long. The effect of Ynon Kreiz’s reign as CEO so far seems to have been to significantly ramp up Mattel’s content strategy and output. At the same time, toy sales and most importantly brand health have improved. Clearly there is a long way to go yet in 2022, but the outlook for Mattel’s 2022 and 2023 is starting to look a tad on the rosy side!


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