NPD Highlights: Force Friday Brings Star Wars to Stellar Heights

A holiday-like fever arrived before Labor Day this year, and one of particular interest to Star Wars enthusiasts. On September 4, a number of major retailers opened their doors at midnight to debut never-before-seen toys and other merchandise centered on the upcoming film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. How strong was the retail force on this “Force Friday?”

“Force Friday provided a phenomenal lift for Star Wars, growing sales by six times its recent average weekly sales,” said Juli Lennett, senior vice president of the U.S. toys division at The NPD Group. “About $1 of every $11 for the week was spent on a Star Wars toy.”

The top three supercategories made up 87 percent of the total dollar sales for the week, with Action Figures, Accessories, and Action Role Play leading the pack with 42 percent of the total sales, likely driven by toy collectors. The top selling Star Wars item for the week was Hasbro’s Star Wars The Black Series Figures 6" Assortment.

“Year to date, the total U.S. toy industry has experienced 7.3 percent growth, and this year’s Star Wars movie-related toys have the potential to be a significant contributor to industry sales through the holiday season,” said Lennett.

Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / Weekly Retail Tracking Service, August 30-September 5, 2015

Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / Weekly Retail Tracking Service, January 4-September 5, 2015

U.S. data is representative of retailers that participate in The NPD Group's Retail Tracking Service. NPD’s current estimate is that the Retail Tracking Service represents approximately 80 percent of the U.S. retail market for Toys.

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