2018 has been, as expected, a tough year for the toy industry. We can't lose our major toy store chain and not feel the pain. That pain has largely been expressed in terms of dollars and disappointing quarterly reports. Consider these recent headlines:
"Hasbro takes third-quarter earnings hit, blames Toys R Us", Washington Post, October 22, 2018
"Toys R Us' demise is having a devastating effect on America's largest toy companies", Business Insider, October 22, 2018
What we don't hear about as much is the human cost that 2018 is taking on the toy industry citizens who have lost their jobs this year. 30,000 Toys R Us employees lost their jobs due to the company's bankruptcy. That's the size of a small city. Think about how many spouses and children were impacted as well.
And it doesn't stop with Toys R Us. Today, October 22, 2018, we learned that Hasbro is laying off 10% of its workforce (see: "Hasbro will lay off hundreds after Toys 'R' Us' closure"). This follows Mattel's announcement in July that itl was laying off 2200 workers (see: "Mattel Is laying off more than 2200 workers after Toys R Us went bankrupt"). And this just in…JAKKS is planning to layoff 12 to 15% of its global workforce.
Next year will be better and hopefully some of those who lost their jobs, our friends and co-workers, will find other positions in this industry that we all love. Still then, I am going to keep them in mind as I read the numbers and look at the dollar signs.