Brandstätter Group sales increased by just under one percent to € 564 million – with 55 million packages sold worldwide PLAYMOBIL was able to set a record in its company history – the number of units sold increased by eight percent, worldwide PLAYMOBIL turnover declined slightly by 0.4 percent
Zirndorf, January 25, 2012 – With € 505 million in sales in 2011, PLAYMOBIL's global sales to retail fell slightly short of the previous year's sales. Still Brandstätter Group's earnings of € 564 million were in the positive range.
PLAYMOBIL development in Germany
An increase in the number of units sold by three percent in the German market for 2011 indicates that consumer interest in PLAYMOBIL is as strong as ever. Due to purchasing decisions tending towards lower-priced products, the German toy market – PLAYMOBIL's largest sales market – nevertheless experienced a slight decline in PLAYMOBIL sales to retail in the low single-digit range. PLAYMOBIL Managing Director Andrea Schauer analyses the trend: "We see the record quantity of packages sold as a positive signal sent by the consumer to PLAYMOBIL. A recommended retail price for the new products for 2011 that was on average seven percent lower compared with the previous year is the reason for the slight decline in sales."
Included in market research company npdgroup Deutschland GmbH's top 10 list for on-sale items by value in the traditional German toy market we find the PLAYMOBIL advent calendar, which continues to be a clear market leader among toy advent calendars, as well as the Princess Dream Castle, a new product for 2011.
The share of the foreign market in total sales rose slightly to 69 percent in 2011. The twelve PLAYMOBIL distribution subsidiaries contributed substantially to this success:
PLAYMOBIL France, still the strongest distribution subsidiary in terms of turnover, reinforced its strong market position with a slight increase in sales, while PLAYMOBIL Benelux and PLAYMOBIL USA recorded a decline in turnover.
PLAYMOBIL Iberica was able to achieve a slightly positive result in an economic environment that continues to be difficult.
PLAYMOBIL UK was also able to achieve a satisfactory development with low single-digit growth.
PLAYMOBIL Austria and PLAYMOBIL Swiss both held steady in a hotly contested toy market.
Despite the financial crisis PLAYMOBIL Hellas was able to score a double-digit increase in sales.
PLAYMOBIL Italia, PLAYMOBIL Nordic and PLAYMOBIL Canada continued the positive trend seen during the past few years and performed with clear double-digit growth.
PLAYMOBIL Mexicana remained steady at last year's sales level.
PLAYMOBIL – New Items in 2012: From the Stone Age to the future
(for the following markets: Canada, France, GreeceMexico, Spain, UK, USA)
PLAYMOBIL's creators in Zirndorf, Germany, have come up with no fewer than 132 new playtime ideas for 2012. The creative mix includes new representations of successful classics and innovative products for new themes ranging from impulse buys to complete gift sets.
The Collectible Horses and Collectible Motorcycles series, as well as the mystery Figures, offer an exciting and affordable product , along with new themes for the Super Set series, which also make ideal birthday gifts.
With sets like the Barn with Silo and Farm House with Market, both including a variety of new animals, the new farm theme makes for perfect springtime fun. Little racecar fans will take great pleasure in the two Car Repair Shop sets, including cars with lights and sound.
When the sunny days begin again in Spring, the Car Ferry with Pier will dock in the new Harbor theme with its café, boats and police station.
The clever Take Along series suits today's children who are constantly on the move, and has been extended with the My Take Along Western City, the My Take Along Pet Clinic and the new Take Along Soccer Match. Now young sheriffs, vets and soccer players can go into action wherever and whenever they want.
In June, to mark the Summer Olympic Games in London, a new collectors´ theme will be launched, the PLAYMOBIL Athletes, showcasing 15 different sports.
A special highlight is the large Pirate Adventure Island, which represents the centerpiece of the new Pirates theme. The Pirate Adventure Island combines fun role play with the exciting mystery of the included puzzle mission. Both the redcoat soldiers and pirates are trying to reach the secret treasure locked within the rocks. Before that door will open, all of the magic coins hidden around the island must be collected and laid down in the correct order.
The Future Planet play theme takes children ages seven and up on a mission to the year 2113, where the E-Rangers are battling the Dark Rangers for possession of the precious energy crystals needed to survive. Clever technical innovations such as vehicles with infrared remote controls, working solar panels and knockout cannons guarantee hours of action and excitement.
In addition to a grand palace with Prince and Princess, the Princess Fantasy Castle includes a lifesize tiara, bracelet and ring that will delight every little princess. For a spectacular finish to the line-up of new products, the huge Mammoth and the dangerous Saber-Toothed Cat are lying in wait for exciting playtime adventures in the Stone Age.
In 2011, the PLAYMOBIL FunPark in Zirndorf, located next to the company's German headquarters, celebrated a new visitor record, with over 725,000 guests. The unique concept of this do-it-yourself amusement park will continue to be attractive for families. This summer, water lovers can look forward to the new FunPark attraction, the power paddle boats.
The positive trend of the LECHUZA brand, high-quality planters with a sub-irrigation system, continued in 2011 as well. Sales increased by about 13 percent to € 45.6 million. The three segments, European-wide end customer business with garden centers and the still recovering indoor plant business, as well as direct marketing to private households, contributed equally to this success. In 2012, the multi-award winning model range of the PREMIUM and TREND product lines will be expanded to include the shallow planter BACINO and the hanging planter NIDO.
PLAYMOBIL and LECHUZA are premium "Made in Europe" brands. The highly modern European production network with its own sites in Germany, Malta, the Czech Republic and Spain will ensure that safety and quality is always at the highest level.
The Dietenhofen site is by far the largest and most efficient production and shipping facility for toys in Germany. At the year end, worldwide dispatch handling in Dietenhofen and Malta processed a record volume of 55 million PLAYMOBIL packages.
PLAYMOBIL Malta is the exclusive manufacturer of the PLAYMOBIL figures, which are included in almost every PLAYMOBIL article as well as the PLAYMOBIL1.2.3 product line. In the meantime, 2.5 billion of the 2.9 inch tall PLAYMOBIL figures have found their way into children's rooms all over the world.
The assembly plant in Cheb (Czech Republic) produces pre-package bags and components for final production in Dietenhofen, as well as packaging-intensive finished products in large production runs, such as the PLAYMOBIL advent calendars. The small production facility in Spain also contributes to the overall performance with its production series of individual articles.
Less than 5 percent of the PLAYMOBIL product line is obtained from longstanding, ICTI-certified affiliated producers in China. This is predominantly the case with electronic parts and articles requiring a high degree of manual labour. These products are put through the same safety and quality tests as the entire product line.
With successful certification under DIN EN ISO 14001.2009 in December 2011 we introduced a common environmental management system for the PLAYMOBIL and LECHUZA brands. In combination with our environmental policy this means the beginning of a process for the best possible protection of the environment and resources. Commercial Director Steffen Höpfner comments: "As a manufacturer of children's toys, preserving a healthy and liveable environment is especially important to us."
The Brandstätter Group employs 3,520 staff worldwide. At mid-year this amounts to 270 (eight percent) more employees than in the previous year. In Germany the 2011 payroll comprised a total of 1,859 employees compared to 1,758 in the previous year.
Investments for PLAYMOBIL and LECHUZA
To strengthen the PLAYMOBIL and LECHUZA brands, record investments of € 81.5 million are planned for 2012. This includes € 23 million for injection molds. € 74.5 million (91 percent) of the total investment volume is earmarked for Germany.
Company owner Horst Brandstätter summarizes:
"For the Group of companies, 2011 was a positive and surprising year. We sold more PLAYMOBIL packages than ever and at the same time did not quite reach the target of sales growth that we ourselves set. In 2012 we want to change this. With large investments and a convincing set of new products we are entering toy year 2012 with renewed energy."