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Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz On Winning Back Princess-‘Frozen’ Toy Deal With Disney: “Big Brands Give You The Ability To Stand Out”

Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz says this day’s acquisition of rights to invent dolls and toys stemming from Disney’s princess and Frozen will arm the firm with extra recognizable properties in a crowded marketplace.

“The importance of enormous franchises is going to turn out to be extra most important than ever,” CEO Ynon Kreiz, who instructed Closing date in an interview after the deal became announced earlier this day. Hasbro had beforehand taken the rights from Mattel in 2014.

Kreiz acknowledged the multi-one year pact with Disney User Products, Video games and Publishing had “been in the works for a while.” Mattel already has had licensing presents with Disney for Pixar’s Automobiles, Toy Epic and approaching near spinoff Lightyear.

Ynon Kreiz
Mattel

Merchants cheered the information of the agreement, sending Mattel shares up 11% in morning trading, though it closed up a extra modest 4% amid deteriorating market conditions.

The 2 Frozen characteristic movies to this point bear grossed $2.7 billion on the realm box keep of enterprise, the Nos. 1 and 2 all-time tallies in animation. But Kreiz is sanguine about a Covid-altered marketplace in which family movies increasingly extra hit streaming both as an different of or similtaneously movie theaters.

A theatrical trot “is a extremely most important mumble” in a property’s doable cost, Kreiz acknowledged, “but streaming is becoming mainstream. Whereas you don’t bear the initial impression of the theatrical start, you proceed to bear the opportunity to take with customers a few instances. Customers leer a movie a few instances in a temporary window.”

The deal, which takes cease in 2023, covers characters from Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, Intrepid, Cinderella, The Cramped Mermaid, Mulan, Pocahontas, The Princess and the Frog, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Tangled, and Frozen. Furthermore in the portfolio moreover entails just a few live-action productions and Disney series Moana and Tiana.

When Kreiz joined Mattel in 2018, he brought significant leisure expertise. The exec has been CEO of Disney-owned Maker Studios to boot to Endemol and Fox Kids Europe. Not surprisingly, his playbook has been to embrace the Hollywood doable of Mattel’s brands, and a vary of initiatives — some with volatile parts — bear been reveal in motion in film, TV and streaming. An upcoming live-action Barbie film, for instance, is directed by Greta Gerwig and stars Margot Robbie.

Whereas bold swings will proceed to be taken, the Disney princess deal is premised on Mattel’s ability to diagram and support “evergreens,” Kreiz acknowledged. “Barbie never had a movie, Hot Wheels never had a movie.” Even so, these properties, along with Thomas & Mates, American Girl and others bear helped the 77-one year-archaic Mattel generate extra than $2 billion in annual gross sales. (The firm will fable financials for the fourth quarter and all of 2021 on February 9.)

Because it nurtures its own properties beyond the toy aisle, Kreiz acknowledged Mattel will ought to be in a position to moreover enhance partner brands. “They offer you the ability to stand out in the marketplace,” he acknowledged. “It’s referring to the huge brands, the build you furthermore mght can fair bear a constructed-in fan injurious. … Subsequent to Disney, we genuinely feel we now bear the strongest catalog available.”

Stephanie Younger, president of Disney User Products, Video games and Publishing, acknowledged in the legitimate announcement that extending ties to Mattel will bring about extra alternatives. In the deal announcement, she predicted “an modern unique era of these loved franchises thru interesting merchandise and play alternatives.”

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