Strong sales gains for dolls including Barbie and Disney Princesses and a tax benefit helped Mattel's 3rd-quarter net income increase 23 percent.
But the toymaker's revenue missed expectations on slower international revenue growth and sales declines for Hot Wheels and continued weakness in Fisher-Price sales.
Toymakers are gearing up for the holidays, during which they make up to half of their annual sales. Toys fared relatively well during the recession because parents cut back on spending for themselves before their children. Holiday sales are expected to be slightly positive. BMO Capital Markets analyst Gerrick Johnson predicts a 2 percent revenue increase for the year.
Mattel Inc., based in El Segundo, Calif., said Friday that net income rose to $283.3 million, or 77 cents per share. That is a penny above what analysts expected. A tax benefit boosted net income by 5 cents per share. Net income totaled $229.8 million, or 63 cents per share last year.
Revenue rose 2 percent to $1.83 billion fell short of the $1.94 billion analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, on average, predicted.
Barbie sales continued to be strong, rising 6 percent worldwide. Other doll sales rose 7 percent, driven by Mattel's Disney Princess dolls and its new Monster High dolls.
Mattel's "Toy Story 3" toys and its new licenses Thomas and Friends and World Wrestling Entertainment sold well, but other categories were weaker.
Sales of Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price toys both fell. Sales of the pricey American Girl doll line rose 2 percent.
"While the all-important holiday season is still in front of us, we remain on track to deliver solid revenue and profit growth driven by our portfolio of brands and countries," CEO Robert A. Eckert said.
Chief rival Hasbro Inc. reports third-quarter results on Monday.
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