- Strong sales for My Little Pony and Marvel-related gear couldn’t fully offset declines for Transformers and Beyblade
- Hasbro, Mattel results suggest largest toy makers are winning market share in a beleaguered category
- Hasbro’s international sales slid 7%, hurt by the stronger dollar
Hasbro also states that “for the third quarter, the Girls category posted very strong growth, increasing 17%, as FURBY, MY LITTLE PONY, EASY-BAKE and ONE DIRECTION all contributed to growth year-over-year,” and that “the HUB’s distribution had increased significantly and is now in more than 70 million households, making it one of the fastest growing networks year-to-date among all cable TV networks in terms of distribution gains. Ratings also continue to grow, and the third quarter was the best in the network’s history posting a 62% increase year over year and a 28% increase versus the second quarter 2012 in kids 2 to 11, representing the strongest growth among all kids’ cable TV networks.”
Here also a tidbit from the conference call that may be applicable to pony.
When you have successful TV series—in fact, Hasbro Studios’s TV shows outperform other TV shows on the Hub by 74% ratings; they’re four of the top-ten shows on the network right now… So as you look at great performance of TV shows, you’re able to produce fewer episodes in subsequent series than you needed to produce in the earlier series. You know, kids love watching episodes over and over again, but you have to add an element of newness, but you don’t need to spend to produce the entire new series again; you can add 13 episodes or 26 episodes to a full of 52 already-produced episodes, so therefore you’re able to—with successful TV series—produce fewer in out years. (36:50)
He laughed off the subsequent remark from the caller, “You’re obviously not thinking of the parents who have to watch with the kids.”
So the conclusion has to be that more fans doesn’t necessarily equal more pony. We can stop being evangelistic about the show now. In fact, what are you doing here? For the sake of pony, go watch Adventure Time, Gravity Falls, or any of the other good shows out there!
Finally, in response to a question about media spending plans, they said, “We won’t break out media by category, but … overall for the fourth quarter in the US, media spend will be up 30% to 40% versus a year ago, and certainly, given the momentum we have in a lot of our pre-school categories, we would expect to spend more there.” (52:12) Their “girls” category was often listed second in terms of growth, so this pattern may carry over to a proportionally lesser degree.