Mattel Inc. on Wednesday said it would begin selling its American Girl products in select Toys “R” Us Inc. locations, extending the iconic doll brand’s reach beyond its novelty stores.
The partnership, which boosts the brands store base nearly sixfold, will make Toys “R” Us the only U.S.-based retailer to feature American Girl shop-in-shops in some stores. American Girl products are currently only available in 20 proprietary U.S. stores and online.
Sales of Mattel’s
American Girl brand fell 8% in 2015. In the most recent quarter ended in June, revenue from those products slid 19% year-over-year. The company blamed the quarterly decline on its Truly Me line of contemporary 18-inch dolls, doll outfits and accessories and less promotional activity, but noted “encouraging early response” to Wellie Wishers, its newest — and lower priced — doll line designed for girls ages 5 to 7 years.
The Wellie Wishers product line will begin hitting Toys “R” Us shelves Sunday. American Girl shop-in-shops will then debut in 97 stores across the country in late October, with additional locations slated to open in 2017. Each shop-in-shop, up to 700 square feet in size, will include an exclusive selection of Truly Me dolls, outfits and accessories, as well as Wellie Wishers.
An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.
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View more information: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/mattels-american-girl-is-headed-to-toys-r-us-2016-08-31