via SeekingAlpha). The company's overall gaming category was down 4% for Q4 but up 10% for the full year, according to the earnings report. Dungeons & Dragons was mentioned as being particularly successful.
The Q4 and full year growth rates for gaming are a slowdown from the 20% growth rate in gaming in Q2 (see "Games Drive Hasbro Sales Jump").
For Q4 Hasbro revenues declined 2%, bringing the full year down to a 4% growth rate. Goldner identified three reasons for the sales decline at the end of the year. Sales of Star Wars merch were down, Goldner said, attributing part of the weakness to the length of time the toys were released before the movie. Last year's Force Friday was September 1 (see "’Force Friday’ Returns"). This year, the company is delaying release of toys tied to Solo until April, the month before the release.
A second reason for Q4 softness was weakness in Europe, mostly tied to Brexit.
The third is the Toys R Us bankruptcy, which impacted sales throughout the quarter, according to Goldner. Those impacts are expected to continue through the first half of 2018 as the chain cuts inventory.
Goldner mentioned the successful closed beta for Magic: The Gathering Arena, the next big video game tied to Magic, as a positive for Magic sales in 2018, and despite a less-than-stellar Q4, investors showed confidence in the company, driving share prices up around 10% on Wednesday.
As Hasbro Reports Challenging Q4
Posted by Milton Griepp on February 9, 2018 @ 5:05 am CT