Toy market news

Schleich GmbH 2020: Seventh consecutive year of growth

For Schleich, one of Germany’s largest toy manufacturers and a leading international supplier of realistic animal figures, the 2020 financial year, which was marked by the coronavirus pandemic, ended on a high note with a slight increase in turnover. In the 2020 financial year, Schleich generated a gross turnover of approx. 210 million euros (previous year: 200 million euros), representing an increase by a low, single-digit percentage. The e-commerce sector and the markets in the USA, United Kingdom and France saw above-average growth in particular and contributed to Schleich’s positive result. This means that Schleich has recorded growth for the seventh consecutive year.

“It has been an extraordinary year across all sectors and industries, as the pandemic and its own challenges have had an impact on everyone – including us,” says Dirk Engehausen, CEO of Schleich GmbH, summing up the past financial year. One positive effect of the lockdown and school closures for the toy industry was that families in particular grew closer and actively spent time together. This explains why toy sales have grown on the whole. However, this increased demand was countered by retail closures during particularly lucrative periods, such as Easter and at the end of the year. “To ensure that we weathered the crisis well, we focused very clearly on our own Schleich online shop and saw huge, above-average growth in this area. This approach was such a success that some of our products had already sold out by the beginning of December,” says Engehausen.

In addition, yet another key to Schleich’s success was the significant double-digit growth in the USA, the United Kingdom and France. Internationalisation is one of the strategic objectives of its partnership with the Partners Group, which began in 2019. Dirk Engehausen said, “With the Partners Group on our side, I am delighted that we have gained a partner who recognises strategic opportunities, evaluates these together with us, and helps us to make them a reality – particularly in times of crisis.”

Outlook for 2021 

Schleich is off to a good start in 2021, and CEO Dirk Engehausen anticipates significant growth and a further increase in turnover in the international markets. As the Toy Fair has been postponed, Schleich will be showcasing all of its latest products for the retail trade at its own virtual fair at the end of January.

New products will be launched in all six ranges: Farm World, Wild Life, Dinosaurs, Eldrador Creatures, Horse Club and bayala. For the first time, there will also be a new collection with figures from the two successful Farm World and Wild Life ranges. A huge Dinosaurs surprise is also billed for the second half of 2021.