NEW YORK (NEWSnet/AP) — Toy maker Hasbro said Monday it will cut about 1,100 jobs, or 20% of its workforce, as a slowdown in the toy business extends into this holiday shopping season.
The nearly century-old Rhode Island-based company behind Monopoly, Play-Doh and My Little Pony toys disclosed the layoffs in a memo to employees published in a regulatory filing.
The company said that the reductions are in addition to 800 job cuts that happened earlier in 2023. As of year-end 2022, the company said it had 6,490 employees.
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Like many toy companies, Hasbro is noticing a slowdown in sales after a surge during pandemic lockdowns when parents splurged on new toys to keep their children busy. But during 2022, the demand weakened and many toy companies slashed prices to move merchandise.
Those challenges have continued. Toy sales in the U.S. were down 8% from January through August, based on Circana’s most recent data.
“The market headwinds we anticipated have proven to be stronger and more persistent than planned,” Hasbro CEO Chris Cocks wrote in the memo. “While we have made some important progress across our organization, the headwinds we saw through the first nine months of the year have continued into holiday and are likely to persist into 2024.”
Cocks had said the toymaker will “focus on fewer, bigger brands; gaming; digital; and our rapidly growing direct to consumer and licensing businesses.”
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