Mattel: Barbie Movie Effect Drives Up Sales At US Toymaker
The bumper success of the Barbie movie, directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling, has given a boost to Mattel, helping push sales up for the first time in a year.
The US toymaker has credited the film with a 9% year-on-year increase in sales between July and September to a staggering $1.9 billion.
That included a 27% jump in doll sales – driven by an enhanced demand for toys from its Barbie, Disney Princess, Disney Frozen and Monster High lines.
Mattel’s New In-House Film Division
The overwhelmingly successful Barbie movie was the first to feature the world’s most famous doll and the first launched by Mattel’s new in-house film division.
The film, released the same day as Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster Oppenheimer, was a summer hit, raking in more than $1 billion and becoming the biggest film of 2023 to date.
However, the Barbie effect failed to raise overall profits at the California-based Mattel, which fell 50% to $146.3 million, due in part to a higher tax bill.
Mattel On Track For “Strong Holiday Season”
Mattel’s Chief Executive and Chair Ynon Kreiz said the company was well-positioned to complete with its rivals, highlighting the Barbie movie as a “global cultural phenomenon”.
He said he expected Mattel to gain market share in the final months of 2023, despite inflation, which could still hit demand for its toys as consumers struggle to buy everyday goods.
Mattel bosses assured investors it was still on track for a “strong holiday season”. Nonetheless, the billion-dollar movie’s incredible success is not unexpected at all.
Barbie’s Marketing Campaign Was The First Hint
According to Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore, the movie’s marketing campaign was the first hint “Barbie” would be a box office smash.
The film’s global success was driven by box office sales in some of the world’s largest movie markets, including Australia, Mexico and the UK.
Barely three weeks into its run, Barbie raked in an astounding $1.03 billion, making Gerwig the first solo female director with a billion-dollar blockbuster.