Barbie drives Mattel's sales higher

Mattel reported a surprise rise in quarterly sales on Thursday as retailers rushed to restock their shelves of Barbie dolls and other toys in high demand from kids stuck-at-home.

Sales of the iconic doll rose 29% - the biggest quarterly sales in nearly two decades. It raked in over half-a-billion dollars in sales. Mattel’s efforts to make the white blonde doll more inclusive with different skin tones and body shapes are paying off by attracting a more diverse customer base.

Barbie helped boost Mattel’s net sales 10%, its biggest quarterly jump in a decade. The maker of brands such as Hot Wheels, Fisher-Price and American Girl has benefited as parents turn to playsets and games to entertain their kids.

The health crisis has radically changed American shopping habits, as consumers snap up everything from Barbies to disinfectant wipes to robot vacuum cleaners and RVs.As for Mattel, the toy maker is forecasting more growth in the holiday season. Investors drove its shares up more than 13% Friday morning.

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