Mattel was formed in 1945. Its founders were Ruth and Elliott Handler and Harold "Matt" Matson (Mattel is a combination of Elliott and Matt's names). The company started out in wood products and soon branched out into toys. Their very first toy was dollhouse furniture created from wood scraps left over from frame making. The Handlers bought out Matson long before Barbie was created.
A Brief History of Mattel:
Mattel sold toys through the 1950s, including wood and musical toys. Mattel became a household name with parents and children alike with the introduction of Barbie in 1959, at Toy Fair in New York. The Handlers were brilliant marketers, and used television advertising on children's television shows to expertly market Barbie and a host of their other products directly to children. Barbie's popularity declined at the end of the 1960s, and so did Mattel's fortunes, and Mattel nearly went bankrupt. Through constant re-invention of Barbie and the rising popularity of lines including Hot Wheels, the company thrives today.
Mattel's Product Line:
In addition to Barbie, Mattel makes popular toys including Hot Wheels, Fisher Price toys including TMX Elmo, and American Girl dolls through their Pleasant Company subsidiary. Other well known toys include Polly Pockets, Matchbox cars, UNO games, and Power Wheels.
Mattel is a Publicly Traded Company:
Mattel is a publicly traded company. Its stock is traded by the NYSE with the symbol MAT.
The company is located in Hawthorne, California.
Mattel's dolls and toys are sold in nearly every country in the world. Mattel has roughly fifty offices located in North and South America, Europe and Asia.
For 2006, Mattel had annual net income of $592.9 million.