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Elvira Sanjurjo (Mattel): "Our brands create stories that go beyond toys"

Elvira Sanjurjo, Marketing Director, Mattel Spain

  • Key4Communications

Mattel turned 30 in the Spanish market last November, and continues with its aim of adapting strategies and developments to our market. Elvira Sanjurjo, Marketing Director at Mattel Spain, explains that "kids want content beyond toys."

In November, Mattel Spain celebrated its 30th anniversary. How have the company and the toy industry changed in this period?

During these last 30 years we have witnessed a great transformation - the market has changed, as well as the society. The market is now global, majors companies are present worldwide, and retail has also evolved. On the other side, children have changed as well, and technology has had much to do with this change. Today toys are not only about playing, but also include all that is created around them.

How can a company maintain its growth despite the economic climate?
The truth is that the market has fallen and families have also cut spending on toys. However, we were able to strengthen our market share in Spain (14.7% in 2012), increasingly the distance from our main competitors.

This consolidation in the market has been driven by the investment we have carried out with new brand launches that have brought economic growth despite the market situation, while also remaining the best partner for key companies from the industry such as Disney and Warner Bros.

The key is to deliver relevant content to children - our brands create stories that go beyond toys. Monster High, Ever After High and Max Steel are more than toys - they are characters with a story behind them, with their own personality, and they provide a world full of imagination .

What are the main changes in the toy industry concerning tastes and interests experienced by today’s kids?

Playing is still very important in the development of the human being. But the truth is that the world has changed and so has the way we play. There are some components that are still the same, but there are elements that have emerged, such as technology and social changes, that have also been reflected in toys and games (more stimulation, more deals in retailers, a higher demand...).

Play remains essentially the same, as it is a must for children. However, kids are what we call "multi- screen" - they want content beyond toys, stories they can watch on TV or online, and where they can participate and feel that they own of what they are seeing. We are providing these experiences with brands such as Ever After High and Max Steel.

What goals have you set for 2014?
Our short-term goal is to maintain our leadership position in the market (14.7% share), taking always into account how the industry evolves this year.

To achieve this, it is an unquestionable priority for us to commit to our brands and invest in them. Each year we strive to keep launching revolutionary toys that contribute to the development of children.

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