“It is with deep and deep sorrow that Hasbro announces the passing of its beloved leader and longtime CEO Brian D. Goldner,” the company said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.
Goldner first revealed his cancer diagnosis in 2020, saying he has been on treatment since 2014. Hasbro announced on October 10 that he would be taking indefinite medical leave.
“Since joining the company over two decades ago, Brian has been the heart and soul of Hasbro. As a charismatic and passionate leader in the gaming and entertainment industries, Brian’s work has brought joy and laughter to children and families around the world. His visionary leadership, kindness and generosity made him loved by the Hasbro community and everyone he touched. On behalf of the Hasbro family, we extend our deepest condolences to his wife, daughter and the entire family, ”said Rich Stoddart, Interim CEO.
Goldner was also a member of the board of directors of ViacomCBS.
Goldner joined Hasbro in 2000 and was quickly recognized as an industry visionary. He was appointed CEO in 2008 and became President in 2015. He was instrumental in transforming the company into a global leader in games and entertainment, going beyond toys and games for television, digital films and games, including the 2019 acquisition of independent entertainment studio Entertainment One. in 2019 for $ 3.8 billion. He sold Entertainment One’s music business to investment firm Blackstone for $ 385 million in cash.
The company’s content portfolio includes Peppa Pig for television as well as film franchises Transformers, GI Joe and My little Pony – the latter has a new Netflix movie (My little pony: a new generation). GI Joe’s latest opus Snake-eyes was released in July. Other Hasbro brands include Magic: The Gathering, Nerf, Play-Doh, Monopoly, Dungeons & Dragons, Power Rangers, and PJ Masks.
Edward Philip, Senior Independent Director of Hasbro’s Board of Directors, said: “Brian’s passing is a huge loss for Hasbro and the world. Brian was universally admired and respected in the industry, and throughout his twenty years at Hasbro, his inspiring leadership and exuberance left an indelible mark on everything and everyone he touched. A mentor and friend to so many people, his passion and creativity have taken Hasbro to new heights. Our love and thoughts are with his wife, daughter and family during this extraordinarily sad time. “
Hasbro was founded in 1923 by Henry and Hillel Hassenfeld. According to the company’s website, she first sold scraps of textiles and then switched to school supplies. The first toys of the 1940s were doctor and nurse kits. Mr. Potato’s chef in 1952 revolutionized the toy industry by becoming the first toy ever to be advertised on television. He released the iconic GI Joe action figure in the 1960s. (He coined the term “action figure” to sell to boys.) My Little Pony and Transformers appeared in the 1980s. The first Transformers movie was in 2007 Goldner launched Hasbro Studios in 2009, the year after being appointed CEO, the first (non-family) outsider to run the company.
Hasbro has signed a licensing agreement with Disney consumer production for the Princess and Frozen brands. He acquired animation studio Boulder Media in 2016. He acquired the Power Rangers of Saban and started Magic: The Gathering Arena in 2018.