Mattel was founded in 1945 by Howard Matson and Eliot Handler, who combined their names to form Mattel. Eliot’s wife, Ruth, became the company president and created Barbie in 1959.
In the 1960s, Mattel revolutionized the toy industry with talking dolls. Chatty Cathy and See N’ Say toys helped the company became the largest toy makers in the USA.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Mattel distributed Nintendo products in Canada and the UK.
In 2002, Mattel closed its last factory in the USA (Fisher-Price) and moved all toy making to China. In 2007, Mattel recalled over 18 million toys including Dora the Explorer and Sesame Street due to lead based paints used in China.
Mattel is currently the world’s largest toy manufacturer. They produce many highly popular brands including Fisher-Price, Barbie dolls, Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars.