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Thread: Mattel no longer owns the rights to MOTU?

  1. #826
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stygian360 View Post
    My guess... no. If you look at the latest wave of single figures they are being released via online etailers only. It's possible the new product they showed at Power con was too far along in development/tooling to pivot away, but that's just a guess. Overall if you look at in store availability, there always seems to be plenty of vehicles and figures. Even in Jan of this year post X-mas '20, the Lego/builder aisle was a ghost town, but there was still plenty of Mega Construx MOTU. To my eyes that's not a good sign and I attest this hasn't improved as time has marched forward by quarters this year. In fact I was somewhat shocked to see ANY new Mega Construx MOTU at Power con as the line doesn't seem to be embraced by anyone but collectors.
    My best guess is the profit margins for Construx are insane. Look at how many licences they have and most are clearly for older adults. I reckon they're like Funko Pops in that they're ridiculously cheap to make but collectors will pay dearly for the form factor. Another example would be Cyberverse. Still in production even though stores were drowning in it. Suggests the profit on an individual sale is worth it for the store.

  2. #827
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    Quote Originally Posted by banthafett View Post
    Each walmart has an " allowance " for clearance for the year. It's up to the store what they want on clearance and how much to mark it.

    The amount for the year all depends on the market they are in and how much money the store makes.

    We have 4 walmarts in a 15 mi radius. 1 has crap clearance and prices because of high theft, so they have a bigger "allowance " for stolen stuff than clearance. While 1 has cheap prices, because they are the king of the market and make tons of money. The other 2 switch back and forth. It all depends on location and the store manager. The one store was the king of the market, they moved the store manager to another store out of market to bring it up, but then the store she left went to hell because of who they brought in.
    I figured something like that. the lego rep….who is one of the nicest people you could meet, she grew up in Japan and my son and I love her stories…..anyway….she told me, my local Walmart was the top selling lego store in her area. I believe because Walmart is really the only big box retailer in my area. I wonder if that’s why we get these insane lego mark downs. The turnover seems fast for them, but again I don’t go in the aisle as much with megabloks MIA.

    I did however score some awesome deals on play mobile playsets a year or so ago. They were $70 and up I got them at $5 and $12. Just the right time I guess. But damn they look great with my Indian Jones figures.

    To the off the thread title point, I think this thread was not just Scott said mattel is losing the rights but also that origins is not doing well. So I would say the store reports and space given to origins is relevant to the discussion. However, I will gladly stop if it’s considered of topic. Not a big deal to me, just thought others would find it interesting.
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  3. #828
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sketchy Skeletor View Post
    My best guess is the profit margins for Construx are insane. Look at how many licences they have and most are clearly for older adults. I reckon they're like Funko Pops in that they're ridiculously cheap to make but collectors will pay dearly for the form factor. Another example would be Cyberverse. Still in production even though stores were drowning in it. Suggests the profit on an individual sale is worth it for the store.
    I just wish they would make more use of the licenses they have with Mega Construx. TMNT for example is one they still have (least as of a few months ago with the release of Hero Mikey), yet there's no more sets. They never even really made a good turtle sewer. That franchise is a license to print money in the right hands.

  4. #829
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fenrys View Post
    I just wish they would make more use of the licenses they have with Mega Construx. TMNT for example is one they still have (least as of a few months ago with the release of Hero Mikey), yet there's no more sets. They never even really made a good turtle sewer. That franchise is a license to print money in the right hands.
    Could be something like even though it's labeled Nick the licence only now covers the OG comic book designs or something with the amount of time that's passed.

  5. #830
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sketchy Skeletor View Post
    Could be something like even though it's labeled Nick the licence only now covers the OG comic book designs or something with the amount of time that's passed.
    Possible, but there's still plenty they could do with it I think. Maybe when the next movie rolls around

  6. #831
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stygian360 View Post
    I'd love to believe this and the recent comments by Mattel at Power con seem to back up your statements; however I have this niggling and lingering doubt as to do many here or this thread wouldn't still be powering along.

    As I'm reading back through some recent replies in this thread it seems like all of a sudden we've pivoted to talk about clearance items, planograms and the like. Not sure what any of that has to do with the central topic of license rights and it might be best of that were slotted in elsewhere.
    It would, as stated many times now, be illegal for Mattel to claim the trademark otherwise. We know but some people just refuse to accept it.


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  7. #832
    Heroic Warrior Stygian360's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Parzival View Post
    It would, as stated many times now, be illegal for Mattel to claim the trademark otherwise. We know but some people just refuse to accept it.


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    The proof will be in the pudding and once that pudding arrives then all doubters (myself included) will be silenced. That pudding being 2023 and beyond and Origins/Masterverse/Mega Construx product being continually produced by Mattel. As another person stated aptly, ultimately who cares who produces the toys as long as someone does.

    The real question is whether He-man will have enough steam to power it through to 2023 regardless of who's making the toys. There has been speculation by myself, 'Toyguru' and others that Origins isn't doing as well at retail as Mattel is leading us to believe. And anyone with eyes can see the 15 deep Rise of Evil packs on shelves, plenty of Battle Cat, Sky Sled, Masterverse, etc. We're heading into the holidays when shelves should start to clear out and there's still plenty of Masters of all iterations to be had. The hard truth is that if only adult collectors are buying Masters product this ride is going to come to a screeching halt before 2023. That's just my two cents folks, so make of that what you will.
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  8. #833
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stygian360 View Post
    The proof will be in the pudding and once that pudding arrives then all doubters (myself included) will be silenced. That pudding being 2023 and beyond and Origins/Masterverse/Mega Construx product being continually produced by Mattel. As another person stated aptly, ultimately who cares who produces the toys as long as someone does.

    The real question is whether He-man will have enough steam to power it through to 2023 regardless of who's making the toys. There has been speculation by myself, 'Toyguru' and others that Origins isn't doing as well at retail as Mattel is leading us to believe. And anyone with eyes can see the 15 deep Rise of Evil packs on shelves, plenty of Battle Cat, Sky Sled, Masterverse, etc. We're heading into the holidays when shelves should start to clear out and there's still plenty of Masters of all iterations to be had. The hard truth is that if only adult collectors are buying Masters product this ride is going to come to a screeching halt before 2023. That's just my two cents folks, so make of that what you will.
    Adult collectors are keeping multiple lines going across multiple companies, even those with shocking distribution. Kids aren't into GI Joe in two different sizes and Z list Marvel Legends, or endless Batman figures from comics they've never read. Or even Transformers with names longtime fans might have to Google for a reminder.

    So much of what we are fed is BS. One minute it's 'kids don't really play with toys' then it's 'kids are 80% of the market through gift givers'. Doesn't remotely add up. As above, kids aren't buying or being gifted those lines. They're just not.

    Further examples are the almost 40yo licences Playmobil, Funko, Jada and whoever else are purchasing. A kid wouldn't know wth they were looking at. The honest truth is production costs are WAY overstated when it comes to toys, they have to be when the retailer can cut the price by 50% and still turn a small profit.

    In short if the profit on an individual item is so high even the store doesn't care how many they have to clearance. There's so many examples. Pops, Cyberverse, Construx, Ghostbusters, Marvel Legends, Mcfarlane...

  9. #834
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    The proof is Mattel telling investors they own MOTU and owning the trademark. There is no other proof needed. If you do not think that is definitive evidence the again you need to research SEC and the law regarding IP. Again, it would be fraudulent. Oh and the fact that people who work with or for Mattel have pointed out Mattel owns MOTU, even in this discussion.


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  10. #835
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sketchy Skeletor View Post
    Adult collectors are keeping multiple lines going across multiple companies, even those with shocking distribution. Kids aren't into GI Joe in two different sizes and Z list Marvel Legends, or endless Batman figures from comics they've never read. Or even Transformers with names longtime fans might have to Google for a reminder.

    So much of what we are fed is BS. One minute it's 'kids don't really play with toys' then it's 'kids are 80% of the market through gift givers'. Doesn't remotely add up. As above, kids aren't buying or being gifted those lines. They're just not.

    Further examples are the almost 40yo licences Playmobil, Funko, Jada and whoever else are purchasing. A kid wouldn't know wth they were looking at. The honest truth is production costs are WAY overstated when it comes to toys, they have to be when the retailer can cut the price by 50% and still turn a small profit.

    In short if the profit on an individual item is so high even the store doesn't care how many they have to clearance. There's so many examples. Pops, Cyberverse, Construx, Ghostbusters, Marvel Legends, Mcfarlane...
    Profit margins are not that high on toys. It's usually anywhere from 20-40%, depending on the volume price price retailer can get. I also suspect Origins is on the low end of that range. A 50% discount most likely means they're selling at a loss.

    Usually when a product gets to clearance, they are not worried about turning a profit, they just want to get rid of it for one reason or another. Stores don't measure margin on individual sales, and they would have a budget for clearance that doesn't have a significant impact on their overall bottom line.

    That's also why you don't really see regular promotions on toys that are more than like 25% max.

  11. #836
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sketchy Skeletor View Post
    Adult collectors are keeping multiple lines going across multiple companies, even those with shocking distribution. Kids aren't into GI Joe in two different sizes and Z list Marvel Legends, or endless Batman figures from comics they've never read. Or even Transformers with names longtime fans might have to Google for a reminder.

    So much of what we are fed is BS. One minute it's 'kids don't really play with toys' then it's 'kids are 80% of the market through gift givers'. Doesn't remotely add up. As above, kids aren't buying or being gifted those lines. They're just not.

    Further examples are the almost 40yo licences Playmobil, Funko, Jada and whoever else are purchasing. A kid wouldn't know wth they were looking at. The honest truth is production costs are WAY overstated when it comes to toys, they have to be when the retailer can cut the price by 50% and still turn a small profit.

    In short if the profit on an individual item is so high even the store doesn't care how many they have to clearance. There's so many examples. Pops, Cyberverse, Construx, Ghostbusters, Marvel Legends, Mcfarlane...
    Two things and of course... with all due respect to your opinions before I say anything:

    1) You're underselling kids way too much for buying the heck out lines like Marvel Legends, Transformers, Fortnite, HALO, you name it. For instance, I stood by recently contemplating a figure purchase and overheard what looked to be a 9 year old extolling the virtues of Soundwave and explaining to his mother the difference between Soundwave and Blaster. One might think, oh my this kid doesn't have access to the 30+ years of Transformers history. How can he possibly know these characters?!? Well, kids have Google, Youtube and fortunately there own eyes to develop interests in things. Now does this a successful toy line make? I don't have the logistical data or P&L statements from any toy company to tell you, but I'm in the toy section in all kinds of stores A LOT and I use my eyes and ears and I see kids buying up toys even from storied properties with very deep history. So whether TG is right in that 80% of sales are going to gift givers, who knows. I mean ultimately how can any toy company tell that anyway? If an adult is buying a toy how does Hasbro make a distinction between an adult gift giver or an adult toy collector? Anyway...

    2) I absolutely agree with you regarding the inflated cost of action figures in particular. It's also terrible when a company that owns the IP for X property sells it for the same price and the same accessory count as a toy that they're paying rights to produce. I know the name for that is 'perceived value' and to lower the price of X in house property just because they aren't paying rights for it may devalue the brand and even the company, but I don't entirely buy that explanation. It seems like a made up phrase to justify charging more for something than you should.
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  12. #837
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    There's no such thing as what a product price 'should' be. The price is whatever the company deems as appropriate for the, yes, perceived value. I price products as part of my job, and our margins range anywhere from negative to 70%. If you wanted to go on a crusade for equal and fair margins, suddenly some basic household goods would be astronomically more expensive.

    These margins are also budgeted across an entire product range. Team A might come in with a target of 40%, Team B might say they can hit 35%, Team C might aim for 45%. But somebody would be rolling these numbers up and see how they add up. They could go to Team B and tell them they need to trim budget to get a bit higher, or they could even go to Team A and say 'hey, we see a bit more value in your product...can you bump your price a bit to offset Team B's margin?

    This isn't even taking into account for volumes. Naturally, a high volume product can get away with a lower margin, since it will still hit a higher raw dollar figure. Lower volume products need a high margin...otherwise you may as well stop selling it.

    Collectors are some of the only people I know who look at profit margin as some sort of ethical value battle. You don't look for a new TV and say 'well, this TV uses a proprietary chipset, and therefore their cost is a little bit lower. They're scamming us!' No, you look at the two products, compare the price vs. features, and then make the purchase. You don't even think about the profit margin on them.

  13. #838
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stygian360 View Post
    Two things and of course... with all due respect to your opinions before I say anything:

    1) You're underselling kids way too much for buying the heck out lines like Marvel Legends, Transformers, Fortnite, HALO, you name it. For instance, I stood by recently contemplating a figure purchase and overheard what looked to be a 9 year old extolling the virtues of Soundwave and explaining to his mother the difference between Soundwave and Blaster. One might think, oh my this kid doesn't have access to the 30+ years of Transformers history. How can he possibly know these characters?!? Well, kids have Google, Youtube and fortunately there own eyes to develop interests in things. Now does this a successful toy line make? I don't have the logistical data or P&L statements from any toy company to tell you, but I'm in the toy section in all kinds of stores A LOT and I use my eyes and ears and I see kids buying up toys even from storied properties with very deep history. So whether TG is right in that 80% of sales are going to gift givers, who knows. I mean ultimately how can any toy company tell that anyway? If an adult is buying a toy how does Hasbro make a distinction between an adult gift giver or an adult toy collector? Anyway...

    2) I absolutely agree with you regarding the inflated cost of action figures in particular. It's also terrible when a company that owns the IP for X property sells it for the same price and the same accessory count as a toy that they're paying rights to produce. I know the name for that is 'perceived value' and to lower the price of X in house property just because they aren't paying rights for it may devalue the brand and even the company, but I don't entirely buy that explanation. It seems like a made up phrase to justify charging more for something than you should.
    Same here, all due respect!

    Just on the kids thing I'm always in toy aisles too, it's all totally anecdotal, because I've never seen a single kid lift the Transformers, Marvel Legends or MOTU I buy. It's always adults. But I've seen plenty of kids lift Lego or WWE, for instance. And the lines I buy are expanding in store space every year.

    I'm in the UK by the way. It just doesn't seem likely to me that parents are buying their kids a 90 castle for a green lady in snake armour to hang around while a red ape attacks it lol. Or a 160 Transformer. It's no coincidence that Hasbro and Mattel take a big line and divvy it up into age groups with the higher end getting far and away the most product releases over time.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffman View Post
    Profit margins are not that high on toys. It's usually anywhere from 20-40%, depending on the volume price price retailer can get. I also suspect Origins is on the low end of that range. A 50% discount most likely means they're selling at a loss.

    Usually when a product gets to clearance, they are not worried about turning a profit, they just want to get rid of it for one reason or another. Stores don't measure margin on individual sales, and they would have a budget for clearance that doesn't have a significant impact on their overall bottom line.

    That's also why you don't really see regular promotions on toys that are more than like 25% max.
    Sorry, just saw your post. I'd say it depends wildly on the toy. Like my local supermarket has a massive selection of Pops that never really seem to shift until clearance, yet they always have the latest stuff. That suggests to me profit per item is nuts otherwise they'd be insane to keep doing that. Same with Micro Machines and even Lego. And I don't think it's a coincidence that there's adult fans for each of those. I'd imagine it's more like how much are we making over time because otherwise it makes no sense logistically in a supermarket in the UK. Those toy sections are tiny.

  14. #839
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sketchy Skeletor View Post
    Same here, all due respect!

    Just on the kids thing I'm always in toy aisles too, it's all totally anecdotal, because I've never seen a single kid lift the Transformers, Marvel Legends or MOTU I buy. It's always adults. But I've seen plenty of kids lift Lego or WWE, for instance. And the lines I buy are expanding in store space every year.

    I'm in the UK by the way. It just doesn't seem likely to me that parents are buying their kids a 90 castle for a green lady in snake armour to hang around while a red ape attacks it lol. Or a 160 Transformer. It's no coincidence that Hasbro and Mattel take a big line and divvy it up into age groups with the higher end getting far and away the most product releases over time.

    - - - Updated - - -



    Sorry, just saw your post. I'd say it depends wildly on the toy. Like my local supermarket has a massive selection of Pops that never really seem to shift until clearance, yet they always have the latest stuff. That suggests to me profit per item is nuts otherwise they'd be insane to keep doing that. Same with Micro Machines and even Lego. And I don't think it's a coincidence that there's adult fans for each of those. I'd imagine it's more like how much are we making over time because otherwise it makes no sense logistically in a supermarket in the UK. Those toy sections are tiny.
    POPs are at the higher end, but likely not greater than 50%. Prices on POPS tend to vary quite a bit though, so it's hard to say.

    They're also a weird product category. To be honest, I've never encountered a retailer that actually likes selling them for the exact reasons outlined. It's a constant deluge of product, and a lot of it has to be clearanced. But they're an excellent 'pick up' item that appeals to a wide demographic due to the variety of licenses. So it's likely not so much thst they're a huge money-maker, it's they can fill an area with them and it will appeal to more people. They also don't have to worry so much about what they're getting, and constantly have to reorganize the shelves.

  15. #840
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffman View Post
    POPs are at the higher end, but likely not greater than 50%. Prices on POPS tend to vary quite a bit though, so it's hard to say.

    They're also a weird product category. To be honest, I've never encountered a retailer that actually likes selling them for the exact reasons outlined. It's a constant deluge of product, and a lot of it has to be clearanced. But they're an excellent 'pick up' item that appeals to a wide demographic due to the variety of licenses. So it's likely not so much thst they're a huge money-maker, it's they can fill an area with them and it will appeal to more people. They also don't have to worry so much about what they're getting, and constantly have to reorganize the shelves.
    This is a big part of it. Just as a for-instance, look at how many collectors talk about going to their Kroger or other grocery store to look for Mega Construx and other properties. The stores know that they may not make any money on those specific items and may have to eat them at clearance, but they also know that those items get feet in the door that otherwise might not have a reason to come in. After they're through the door, then they might buy some other items. As you, I believe it was, alluded to in another post, it's not about the profitability of a specific item in a store, it's about the overall profitability of all the items in aggregate and you'll carry some items that you take a hit on, banking those items will drive sales on other items. I remember working grocery when I was younger, it was always frustrating to hear people come in and complain about how 'expensive' our HBA items were, when we were already selling most of the HBA at or below cost. It was only there because people expected a store like that one to carry HBA items.

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