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Loot Crate Blames Material Costs for Price Increase image

Loot Crate Blames Material Costs for Price Increase

Loot Crate this month is imposing the first price increases for its subscription boxes, says VP Licensing Brian Mann. Increases range from 4% to 8% depending on the length of the subscription, which can run up to one year. Only the entry-level one-month entertainment box remains unchanged at $15.99.

A portion of increases were tied to rising costs, chief among them a jump in the price of paper and cardboard, key components of the boxes themselves. Hundreds of small paper manufacturers have closed in recent years as the Chinese government stepped up enforcement of environmental regulations and sought to trim industry capacity. With a reduced supply of carton paper, raw paper prices rose throughout last year.

“We really want to be able to deliver the very best experience that we can for the very best value,” says Mann, who estimated that raw paper prices increased 30%. But “at a certain point in order to maintain healthy margins we just had to meet the increasing costs on certain materials.”

Mann says the higher pricing has resulted in “incredibly minimal” churn among Loot Crate subscribers, who number more than 650,000 across 35 countries.

Meanwhile, about two thirds of subscribers to the new Major League Baseball (MLB) Sports Crate package (Inside Licensing, March 2) have taken the season subscription: six boxes of 5-7 items (t-shirts, mugs, socks, articulated player figures) for $179, says Mann. The sports packages have attracted a broader audience for Loot Crate, with subscribers evenly split between the 18-34 and 34-49 age groups.  The entertainment box subscribers are more heavily weighted toward the 18-34 age group, says Mann.

There are boxes for 10 teams – New York Mets, New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Kansas City Royals, Texas Rangers, St, Louis Cardinals, and San Francisco Giants. So far, it has pitched the service to prospective customers through email and team and player social media, along with in-stadium advertising. The company is including 200 “golden tickets” in the boxes during the season, which includes invites to batting practice, player meet-and-greets and other promotions.

“In-stadium signage has been really strong from an awareness perspective,” but with a lower conversion rate than with the more targeted email and social media campaigns, says Mann.

Loot Crate has shelved plans to expand the number of MLB teams available through the program until 2018, deciding instead to “fine-tune” the current roster, says Mann. It also has had discussions with other professional sports leagues about similar programs, but hasn’t signed any agreements, says Mann.

Contact:

Loot Crate, Brian Mann, VP Licensing, 323-828-9696, brian.mann@lootcrate.com

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