About American Girl Brands, LLC

Offering a historically-themed alternative to Barbie, American Girl Brands produces the American Girl Collection of 18-inch, high-dollar dolls such as Addy Walker (an escaped slave) and Rebecca Rubin (a young Jewish immigrant). The company also makes modern dolls with a focus on "strong character," publishes American Girl magazine and American Girl books (some 155 million copies sold), and sells room décor, clothing, and accessories. Other brands include Truly Me, Girl of the Year, Bitty Baby, and WellieWishers. American Girl Brands markets its products through catalogs, its website, and in about 20 stores. The company, which operates primarily in the US, is a subsidiary of toy giant Mattel. It was founded by Pleasant Rowland in 1986.

Geographic Reach

American Girl products are sold primarily in the US. Flagship American Girl Place stores are located in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City. Other US locations include Atlanta, Dallas, Miami, Nashville, Seattle, and Washington, DC. Its products are available in select specialty stores in Canada, as well as through three franchise stores in the United Arab Emirates.

The company has warehouse and distribution facilities in Middleton, DeForest, and Wilmot, Wisconsin.

Sales and Marketing

Boasting some 87 million visitors to date, American Girl stores have become destinations for mostly females of all ages. Besides its portfolio of flagship and smaller namesake stores, American Girl peddles its products directly to consumers through its catalog and online store. The company's children's publications are sold to certain US and Canadian retailers.

Financial Performance

A subsidiary and reportable segment of Mattel, American Girl Brands posted 2017 sales of $452 million, a 21% decrease vs. 2016's $571 million. It reported a loss that year of about $73 million compared to income of $106 million the prior year. The brand has been struggling for several years.

Strategy

With limited retail reach and relatively pricey dolls, American Girl Brands has been struggling in recent years (sales fell some 25% between 2013 and 2017). It has tried temporary, pop-up store locations as well as store-within-as-store areas in now-bankrupt Toys "R" Us sites. In addition, the company has been shuttering some operations (including a Wisconsin call center and warehouse in 2018) and cutting jobs.

New management at parent Mattel maintains American Girl is still a key brand for the company and has announced a turnaround plan for the subsidiary that includes focusing on price value, restoring the premium retail experience through better merchandising and marketing, investing in superior customer data to improve direct marketing and loyalty programs, and modernizing the content ecosystem around the brand.

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American Girl Brands, LLC

8400 Fairway Pl
Middleton, WI 53562-2548
Phone: 1 (608) 836-4848
Fax: 1 (608) 831-7089

Stats

  • Employer Type: Subsidiary
  • President: Katy Dickson
  • VICE PRESIDENT OF DESIGN: Barbara Meyer
  • Partner: Isa E Primavera
  • Employees: 1,915

Major Office Locations

  • Middleton, WI
  • East Aurora, NY

Other Locations

  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Scottsdale, CA
  • Lone Tree, CO
  • Miami, FL
  • Orlando, FL
  • Natick, MA
  • New York, NY
  • Bethlehem, PA
  • Dallas, TX
  • Deforest, WI
  • Wilmot, WI
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