Mattel Profit Tops Street View as Barbie Sales Jump

Mattel’s holiday-quarter profit beat Wall Street estimates, mainly on strong demand for the top toy company’s Fashionista Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars.

The company, which recently gave its 50-year-old iconic product Barbie a facelift, also benefited from tighter cost controls and a weak U.S. dollar.

Fourth-quarter net income rose to $328.4 million, or 89 cents a share, from $176.4 million, or 49 cents a share, a year earlier.

Excluding a tax benefit, the profit was 81 cents a share, beating the analysts’ average forecast of 68 cents, according to Thomson Reuters.

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Net sales rose 1 percent to $1.96 billion, including a benefit of 4 percentage points from changes in currency exchange rates. Analysts had expected sales of $1.98 billion.

El Segundo, California-based Mattel [MAT  20.04  —  UNCH  (0)   ] saw gross sales fall 2 percent in its domestic markets and rise 3 percent internationally. It is expanding its presence in emerging markets like China and India to offset weakness at its home turf.

The company, whose rivals include Hasbro [HAS  31.54  —  UNCH  (0)   ] and Hello Kitty creator Sanrio of Japan, pointed out weakness at its Fisher-Price and American Girl brands.

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