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BARBIE® DOLL MARKS NEW MILLENNIUM WITH HIPPER LOOK, LOGO AND ATTITUDE

 -- Barbie® Doll Knows Girls and They Want More Than Just Another Pretty Face --

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., July 11, 2000 – The Barbie® doll has done it again, she’s reinvented herself to fit with the fast-paced, ultra-modern world of girls today.  There’s no mistaking Barbie for last Millennium’s doll, in fact, there’s no mistaking her for last year’s doll.  With a logo sporting a sassy, teenage signature look, and colors that extend beyond the expected bubble gum pink, the line has a fresh feel to secure at least four more decades on top. 

Barbie Brand “Gets” Girls

            Where once there was a beautiful, two-dimensional fashion doll, there is now one of the most productive and successful girl-targeted brands in the world.  The Barbie Brand produces the latest in clothing, fashion accessories, furniture, make up and electronics for today’s girls. 

“The fact is, we are reaching girls better than any brand out there,” says Adrienne Fontanella, president, Mattel.  “We have taken the intangible spirit of Barbie -- that thing that no other company has put its finger on -- and used it to bring life to a whole line of products for girls.  We know what girls like and we are constantly making changes to be right there with them.”

New for 2000

            Applying four decades of knowing what girls are into at all times, the Barbie brand has a hipper, more relevant look that reflects trends right now.  The packaging is updated, bright and not so pink as in the past.  Fresh blues, greens and oranges grace the new style along with a more open design allowing light to flood the box and really bring the doll and accessories to life.  Every doll from Ken to Kelly will have it’s own logo, color and signature style true to each one’s personality and updated feel.  What was once recognized as the “Pink Aisle,” is now a Barbie doll world with a whole new attitude.  The updated packaging makes navigating the new range of items an easier, fun experience for girls and parents.

            Could a brand that really knows what girls want produce only fashion dolls?  As the techno-savvy, fashion conscious, ultra busy girls of today have become an ever-moving consumer target, the Barbie brand has become much more than a doll.  Hot new fashions for real girls -- including textures from crushed patent leather to crocodile and pony prints -- are in the line up for Barbie 2000.  Knit tops, bootleg pants, backpacks and sleepwear keep these fashions at the height of what’s hip.  And it doesn’t stop with the clothes.  Hair clips and activity sets that allow girls to express themselves by creating their own lip-gloss and nail hues round out the latest looks.

 “We know we’re going to have to stay on our toes to keep up with what girls want,” says Fontanella.  “Barbie has always reflected what girls are interested in.  Today that is fashion, hair, activities and technology.  We’ve got very cool products that appeal to these girls right now.”

Techno Tidbits

            With electronic gadgets and ultra-popular Web sites, the Barbie brand has its finger on the pulse of girls around the world.  Four best-selling CD-ROMs in the last four years have Barbie Software for Girls constantly upping the ante on hot new games.  The latest tech toy is the Barbie Magic Genie Bottle and CD-ROM that lets girls interact with a 3-D adventure game using a Genie Bottle connected to their computer. 

The new Barbie Polaroid I-zone is an instant pocket camera with sticker film that allows girls to create postage-size stamps to stick all over themselves, their notebooks, their lockers -- whatever.  The Secret Talking® Electronic Scrapbook is an interactive keepsake that uses scanning technology to let young girls lock away their treasures and decorate their photos with “talking” stickers containing ultra-cool secret messages -- unlocked with a wave of the scanner pen.  For those rowdy slumber parties, the Share or Dare®! Electronic Party Game is a fast-paced combination of hot potato and truth or dare.  The girl left holding the game when the music stops answers a Share question (topics include fashion, future careers and school) or takes a whimsical Dare challenge.

With the relaunch of www.barbie.com, more interactive features and activities will keep it on top of the list of girls’ fave Internet destinations (it is consistently rated in the Top Ten Kids Sites for ages 2-11).  Attracting more than 20,000 visitors per day, www.generationgirl.com allows girls to enter the world of Barbie doll and her Generation Girl friends.  Girls submit more than 1,000 items per week to the online Generation Girl Magazine, outlining what is going on in their schools, towns and lives.

We Didn’t Forget The Doll

            While the Brand has been busy keeping up with what makes girls tick, there’s no forgetting that Barbie doll is the main attraction.  There continue to be plenty of new Barbie dolls and friends for little girls -- and uber-hip Barbie dolls, more relevant for pre-teens.  Girls love hair, they play with it, decorate it and color it, and Barbie doll has it all -- strands of hair studded with rhinestones, clips that girls can use to glam-up their own hair or the doll’s, and hair that changes to bright pink or blue with a little water.  Jewel Girl Barbie doll, available in August, will be the first with the new, more athletic physique and the first-ever Barbie doll bellybutton to better sport all the hottest midriff-bearing fashions like crop tops and hipster pants.  The Generation Girls are back with their street-fashion clothing, cool interests ranging from art to extreme sports and even a hot new deejay friend who’s spinning the latest tunes at International High. 

Barbie doll’s little sister Kelly® doll and her Kelly Club® friends have really taken off with younger girls.  In the Kelly Club® collection, each doll is featured in a variety of roles such as baker, pilot, swimmer, golfer and wizard.  Three different themes, including career, sports and fantasy, will spotlight each friend in an outfit unique to their individual personalities. 

Barbie doll and Barbie brand products are right there with girls, enjoying every moment of what it means to be a girl in the new Millennium.

About the Brand

            Since her creation in 1959 as a paper-doll inspired friend, the Barbie doll has achieved the title of the most popular fashion doll ever created.  She’s held that title by adapting her look, lifestyle and fashions to meet changing times.  In 1999 the Barbie doll line posted sales of $1.5 billion with more than one billion Barbie dolls (and family members) sold since 1959.

Mattel, Inc. is a worldwide leader in design, manufacture and marketing of family products.  With headquarters in El Segundo, California, Mattel has offices and facilities in 36 countries and markets its products in more than 150 nations throughout the world.

BARBIE and associated trademarks are owned by Mattel, Inc.  Information courtesy of Mattel, Inc. 

Visit Barbie's Official home at http://www.barbie.com

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