Hasbro Names Owen Playskool President
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) _ Toymaker Hasbro Inc. on Thursday promoted Dan Owen, a sales executive with Playskool, to president of the subsidary, two days after Stephen A. Schwartz resigned from the post.
Owen, who joined Hasbro in 1974 as a sales representative and rose to senior vice president, will answer to Alfred J. Verrecchia, chief operating officer for the company’s domestic toy operations.
Under Schwartz, Playskool was Hasbro’s fastest-growing division during the past two years, taking on the powerful Fisher-Price unit of Quaker Oats Co. Playskool, whose products include Mr. Potato Head and Tinkertoys, generated about $352 million in domestic sales last year, or about 25 percent of Hasbro’s $1.4 billion in worldwide net sales.
David S. Leibowitz, an investment banker and senior vice president with American Securities Corp. in New York, said Hasbro made the right move in promoting Owen.
″Dan is very well equipped to assume the reins at Playskool,″ said Leibowitz. ″He is the right man in the right place for the job.″
Schwartz resigned Tuesday. He said he planned to form a consulting firm on toys and related products.
Under a management shakeup, he would have reported to Verrecchia. He had been reporting directly to Alan G. Hassenfeld, Hasbro chairman and chief executive.
Schwartz said the parting was amicable, but the shakeup ″wasn’t necessarily right for me.″
Hassenfeld and Owen could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Recently Hasbro’s sales have lagged, and Verrecchia may have been appointed to oversee domestic toy operations because he has more of a financial background, analysts suggested.
In other moves, Pawtucket-based Hasbro appointed Norman Walker, head of European operations, president of the newly created International Division, which combines the European division with Hasbro’s operations in South America and the Pacific Rim.
E. David Wilson, senior sales vice president of Milton Bradley, was appointed president of the games division.