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Mattel Stock: Barbie Has a New Job with Disney?

Mattel has won back the rights to sell toys inspired by Walt Disney characters from its main rival, Hasbro.

Updated at 12:36 pm EST

Mattel  (MAT) - Get Mattel, Inc. Report shares surged higher Wednesday after the toymaker said it won back a contract to sell merchandise inspired by Walt Disney DIS characters from rival Hasbro  (HAS) - Get Hasbro, Inc. Report.

The Wall Street Journal first reported that Mattel, which lost the licensing rights to Disney-inspired toys in 2016, will begin selling the items next year, with a lineup that includes characters from the blockbuster 'Frozen' movie franchise. Mattel confirmed the report, noting it will have global licensing rights to develop lines of toys for Disney Consumer Products, Games and Publishing, including fashion dolls, small dolls, and figures.

“We are incredibly proud to welcome back the Disney Princess and Frozen lines to Mattel,” said Mattel COO Richard Dickson. “As the worldwide leader in dolls, we look forward to bringing our unique Mattel Playbook approach to brand management, product and marketing expertise, and unrelenting attention to detail and quality to create innovative and inspiring lines for these iconic stories and characters.”  

Mattel shares were marked 8.9% higher in early trading Wednesday to change hands at $21.35 each. Hasbro shares, meanwhile, fell 2.2% to $93.47 each.

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Mattel Reports Earnings Soon

Mattel is set to report December quarter earnings on February 9 following what the maker of Barbie and Hot Wheels forecast would be a solid holiday shopping season, with sales rising by 15% and earnings in the region of $900 million to $925 million.

Mattel said it was "very successful in working through global supply chain disruptions," according to CEO Ynon Kreiz. "And it's not that we were not impacted, but we did anticipate short supply and longer lead times, and factor that into our planning and took very specific mitigating actions.

Hasbro, meanwhile, is still reeling from the death of its former CEO, Brian Goldner, who passed on October 11 away just hours after taking medical leave for continued medical care following treatment for cancer in 2014.

Still, the seller of Monopoly, Play-doh and Nerf product  reported stronger-than-expected third-quarter earnings in late October as its recent focus on digital gaming and entertainment continues to add to the toymaker's top and bottom lines.

Hasbro's total gaming category, including all gaming revenue, most notably, ‘Magic: The Gathering’ and ‘Monopoly,’ which are reported in the franchise brands portfolio, totaled $658.6 million for the third quarter, up 21% over the same period in 2020.