Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner says his company is working on NFT technology, and that it could be applied to collectibles in the company’s portfolio — including Magic: The Gathering.
Responding to questions from analysts during a quarterly earnings call on Tuesday, Goldner indicated that NFTs could be an option for several brands in the portfolio.
“NFTs are a real opportunity for us,” Goldner said. “As you know, we have so many brands that really operate on multiple demographic levels; whether it’s Transformers, whether it’s Magic and the D&D brand, and brands like G.I. Joe. We have a team that is leading our effort out of the west coast. We have our arms around this and see multiple opportunities on the NFT side, and you’ll hear more about that as we move forward. But we are actively developing our opportunities here, and we do see it as substantial.”Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner
Late last year, Hasbro refactored how it structures its financial reports. That revealed the startling amount of money that Magic: The Gathering and D&D, combined with digital games, make for the company. While the Rhode Island-based company is traditionally thought of as a toy manufacturer, Magic, D&D, and associated digital brands earn the company nearly half of its profit.
“The craziest number is that the operating profit for the WotC and Digital Gaming segment for 2020 was $420.4 million,” wrote the hobby games analysts at ICv2 in February. “That’s an eye-popping number on its own, representing a 46% operating profit margin, but what’s even more amazing is that […] the consumer products segment generated over four times the WotC segment’s sales in 2020 ($3.65 billion), for less profit.”
Let’s start with fungible. What does it mean?
Basically, fungible means that the units are interchangeable, each unit is indistinguishable from the other. Take currency for example. A dollar bill is always worth $1, and all the 1$ bills are the same. You could also trade a combination of four quarters, and that would add up to $1, and it would be the same as the $1 bill. Let’s take another example, one gallon of gasoline at Exxon is the same as one gallon at Chevron. A grain of rice is the same as another grain of rice, and etc.
When something is not fungible, it just means that is it not interchangeable. The best example of this would be land. An acre of land in Manhattan, New York is not equal nor interchangeable with an acre of land in the Arizona desert or freezing Alaska. Even though both lots encompass the same amount of land (1 acre) they do not and will never have the same value.
Another great example would be art
Just because two paintings are of the same size that doesn’t mean they have the same value. Let say you were in possession of the Mona Lisa and you loaned it to the museum. You would not be okay with them returning any other painting than the one you lent, merely because it was the same. You would expect to get back the same painting you loaned out in the first place.
This makes art a non-fungible asset. A non-fungible token is something that represents the ownership of an asset that is not interchangeable with another.
Other morsels of information from the investor call are that Magic: The Gathering is meeting, and potentially exceeding, the goals that developers had set for it. The game recently became available on iOS devices. Goldner said revenue was up 24%, and that the average weekly playtime is hovering around 9 hours. The physical business isn’t doing too shabby either, despite the pandemic. Kaldheim was reportedly the biggest-selling winter set of all time.