Hasbro saw its Boys toys segment grow 25% in Q1 2011, behind Beyblade and early shipments of toys tied to Thor and Transformers: Dark of the Moon. And while Captain America: The First Avenger is also expected to be a contributor to the segment in 2011, X-Men: First Class is being largely ignored.
The company reported that it is unable to fill demand on Beyblade Metal Fusion, and that it’s trying to catch up with unfilled orders worldwide. The Tomy brand enjoyed a run in the last decade that peaked at $300 million in sales for Hasbro in 2003. Hasbro has the rights to the Tomy brand in many markets around the world (except for some Asian markets) this time around. The brand has been getting exposure in the U.S. via Cartoon Network, which has been showing the new anime (see “New Beyblade Anime Debuts this June”). Hasbro execs in the conference call declined to characterize Beyblade sales relative to the 2003 peak (which probably means they’re smaller).
Those same execs said they’re “very excited about early shipments of Thor at retail” as well as Transformers, noting “It’s going to be a great Transformers year.” It’s too early to tell on Cap, although they were generally expressing confidence about sales tied to the brand.
But prospects are not so great for sales of toys tied to X-Men: First Class. In fact, a Hasbro exec on the call corrected an analyst who asked about the prospects for the three Marvel movies this year, saying that there were only two Marvel movies. When the analyst challenged that number, asking about X-Men, the exec noted that the movie was produced by Fox, not Marvel, and that there was “less product” related to X-Men slated for this year.
Nonetheless, Hasbro said that “Long term, we really like the Marvel business.”