TFTM Interviews Hasbro UK16/09/2008
Over the last few months we at Transformers At The Moon have been speaking to the Transformers Brand Manger at Hasbro UK regarding various aspects of Transformers within the UK, so we thought that we would start the week by bringing you some of the information and answers that we have been given since we first started speaking to them in June.
We are unable to publish the full list of question and answers at this time, but hopefully what will follow with give everyone a better understanding of the role that Transformers has to Hasbro UK.
1. Where, when compared with the other Hasbro properties, would you say that the Transformers brand lies in terms of importance to Hasbro UK?
Hasbro: Transformers is one of the top priority brands for Hasbro and always has been.
2. According to industry figures for advertising expenditure for April 2008, Transformers was the 10th highest brand that Hasbro spent money on during that period. Could you give us an idea as to how the money was spent, which media were used etc.
Hasbro: This went on TV media – a mix of satellite and terrestrial
3. What is current demographic used for marking Transformers, and how has this changed over the past 20 year?
Hasbro: We have two audiences Boys aged 6 to 12 and the Collectors – this really hasn’t changed over the years, although the Movie did give Transformers mass market appeal
4. Were you surprised by how well the Transformers figures sold within the UK in 2007?
Hasbro: The core figures always sell well, especially legends and deluxe – but I think 2007 exceeded our expectations
5. The Transformers Movie Legends figures were the best selling action figure of 2007 within the UK, what does this mean to Hasbro UK, and what, if any, affect did this have on your strategy for 2008?
Hasbro: We always do well with Legends and will continue to have them in the line
6. How did the Transformer Movie change the perception that Hasbro UK have towards the Transformers brand, both from a sales and marketing point of view, but in terms of the general internal perception of the brand.
Hasbro: Like I said, Transformers has always been a priority brand for us and will continue to be.
7. Who is responsible for the assortment breakdown, Hasbro US, Hasbro Europe or Hasbro UK?
Hasbro: We all contribute to the decisions and work as a global team
8. Who decided which figures are / are not released into the UK market?
Hasbro: We try to bring in everything, but it depends on availability of waves/assortments
9. Forbidden Planet often stock figures from Waves in advance, normally in multi-lingual packaging. Are these figures official UK releases or have they imported them from the US / Canada?
Hasbro: Sometimes we bring in stock from the US to cover stock demand and in stock dates.
10. Has the UK release of the Transformers Movie line now finished? (Asked June 2998)
Hasbro: Most of the Movie line has now finished as we launch the Universe and Animated segments.
11. In the past some figures have been extremely difficult to obtain with the UK, whilst others sit on the shelves. Part of this appears to be down to the breakdown of assortments, sometimes one of one figure and three or four of another. Is this something that Hasbro UK are likely to change, to make the assortment breakdowns more of an even spread, or is this out of your hands?
Hasbro: As a Global team we take on past learning’s from retail and sales and try to incorporate this into new waves.
12. How aware are Hasbro UK of the longtime Transformers fanbase?
Hasbro: Very aware, the brand has been around for nearly 25 years, and the fan base has always been strong. I try to visit the fan sites every week and keep up to date with new news
13. Are Hasbro UK likely to make an appearance at any UK based Transformers conventions? I know organised of both TransForce and AutoAssembly have contacted Hasbro UK reps in the past. (Again asked June 08)
Hasbro: I read an article about the Autobot Assembly recently, and I did want to attend except I’m on holiday the first 2 weeks of August. Please let me know when the next event is happening and I’ll try to attend. I can imagine there is a great atmosphere at these events.
14. The current Transformers line, Transformers Animated, launched on Nick Toons towards the end of March with the toys being released at the start of June, what are Hasbro UKs plan for marking and releasing of this line?
Hasbro: We are very excited about the Animation; I think the new line looks great
15. Have you been pleased with the number of viewing figures that Nick Toons have received for the Transformers Animated show?
Hasbro: Yes, the numbers are encouraging.