Toy manufacturer surprises with profits

Toy maker Hasbro Inc. said yesterday its second-quarter profit rosefive per cent, beating expecta-tions, as robust sales of Transformersand G.I. Joe toys — both tied to summer movies — helped offsetinternational sales hurt by the stronger dollar.

Toy maker Hasbro Inc. said yesterday its second-quarter profit rose five per cent, beating expecta-tions, as robust sales of Transformers and G.I. Joe toys — both tied to summer movies — helped offset international sales hurt by the stronger dollar.

Profit for the three months ended June 28 rose to $39.3 million US, or 26 cents per share, from $37.5 million, or 25 cents per share, last year. Excluding costs related to a joint venture with Discovery Communications to form a TV network, income was 32 cents per share.

Revenue edged up one per cent to $792.2 million from $784.3 million last year. Excluding the adverse affect of the stronger dollar, net revenue rose seven per cent.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters predicted a profit of 23 cents per share on revenue of $797.1 million.

In the U.S. and Canada, sales rose five per cent to $490.9 million from $467.7 million, boosted by sales of Transformers and G.I. Joe toys. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen came out earlier this month, and G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra, debuts in August. Other strong sellers in the region were Littlest Pet Shop, Nerf, Play-Doh and Furreal Friends.

Internationally, sales fell six per cent to $276.2 million from $293.7 million, hurt by the stronger dollar.

Transformers and G.I. Joe toys were also among the better sellers internationally. One weak spot was games and puzzles. Hasbro owns a multitude of game titles including Scrabble and Monopoly — and sales in that division fell 17 per cent. But Hasbro said that was due to the timing of shipments for promotional programs that will roll out over the next few months.

Summer movie tie-in toys have been one bright spot for toy makers. Hasbro has been buoyed in recent years by toys tied to movies including Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk, along with this year’s Transformers and G.I. Joe.

 
 
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