Hasbro Is Getting Rid of Gender Categories In Its Revenue Reports
Over the last few years, toy companies and retailers have been hearing customers ask over and over and over again why we can’t have merchandise of our favorite female characters. When we ask where our Rey toys are, or Phasma or Gamora or Black Widow or Leia even female dinosaurs, these companies don’t always respond with the perfect, immediate, enthusiastic solutions we’d hope for, but in general, things seem to be getting steadily better in toyland equality.
And now Hasbro has taken a what looks to be giant leap forward in this arena. In their 2016 year-end earnings report, they announced that starting now, they’ll no longer be reporting revenue along gender lines.
Beginning with the first quarter, we will no longer report revenue along the Boys, Games, Girls and Preschool categories. Instead, we will provide a revenue breakdown of Franchise Brands, Partner Brands, Hasbro Gaming and Emerging Brands. We believe this is a more relevant and appropriate view of our business.
“Relevant and appropriate” is right. According to the same report, revenue in their boys’ department grew by 4% over the last year, while revenue in their girls’ department grew by–wait for it–FIFTY PERCENT. In a world in which being deemed a marketable demographic is real power, women and girls are finally starting to get the respect they deserve as a group whose dollars are worth taking.
Hasbro must be seeing that with the huge rise in action, sci-fi, and other traditionally designated “boy” categories getting an influx of female shoppers, and it makes sense to only make it easier for those girls to access the toys they want to buy. So not only are more Rey and Jyn toys, for example, being made and sold, but by selling them under the category of Star Wars or Disney toys, rather than boys’, they can secure the largest customer base possible, without risking alienating boys or girls. And by filing their revenue under the same categories, that hopefully makes it easier to get those ultra-sellable toys made, without focus-group hangups about whether or not female protagonist toys are even marketable to begin with. (Remember that 50% growth? They are.)
More money for Hasbro, and more female-centric toys for us. That’s a solid win/win!
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