April 21 - Toys aimed at girls were the big driver at Hasbro, which turned in a winning earnings report just after rival Mattel, with its bruised Barbie brand, hit the skids. Bobbi Rebell reports.
Girls rule. That's the big takeaway from Hasbro's better-than-expected profits. Sales of hot girl toys like My Little Pony and Nerf Rebelle shot up 21 percent in the first quarter. Boy toys, which is still the bigger category, rose just two percent. It's another knock to Mattel's Barbie. Last week Mattel reported a losing quarter, blaming a double digit fall in sales of the iconic Barbie dolls. Piper Jaffray's Stephanie Wissink reiterated her overweight rating saying: "Evolution of the model from a traditional vendor to a diversified entertainment company and franchise brand manager continues, and supports attractive cash generation." She also points out that with movies like Captain America, and the upcoming Spiderman and Transformers installments, Hasbro's boy segment is very well positioned. The stock has had a strong run-up around 25 percent over the last year. Rival Mattel has been losing ground.