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Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner passes away

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Brian Sozzi and Julie Hyman give their deepest condolences as they discuss the life and legacy of Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner, who sadly passed away Tuesday at the age of 58.

Video Transcript

JULIE HYMAN: Sad news reaching us last night that the CEO of Hasbro, Brian Goldner, had died at the age of 58, just two days after going on medical leave-- longtime CEO of Hasbro. And Brian Sozzi, in addition, of course, to being a business leader, you knew Brian. He was one of the early folks who gave you an interview. Talk to us about the reaction to his passing.

BRIAN SOZZI: Yeah, Julie, you know, I think we tend to get so wrapped up in talking to all these executives. And sometimes we fail to realize that, you know, they are just humans like us. They have family members. You know, they deal with a lot of the same things that we deal with. And, you know, I really spent the whole night last night, looking back at, really, all our old interviews-- my old interviews with him.

Brian going back to my prior place of employment, The Street, and he was one of the first people that gave me an interview, maybe in 2013 or 2014. I was still trying to get my sea legs under myself in this industry. And he said yes, and we met up at the toy fair. And he talked to me, just incredibly kind and generous with his time.

It's been a pleasure. It was a pleasure getting to know him all these years, and very much a family man. He was also a member of the board of directors of ViacomCBS and extremely well respected in the toy industry and just very generous and kind with his time.

You know, I was thinking back to 2017. We were at the toy fair, and, you know, he finished wrapping up the segment. And he takes some time out with me. We're out there shooting Nerf guns in one of the display setups. And then he asked me to go to the movies after. And I look back and I regret not going to the movies with him because I had to go back to the office.

And I look back in hindsight, and what the hell was I thinking? I should have taken that time out, enjoyed the moment, and went to go see a movie trailer with Brian Goldner. And, you know, I think moving forward, at least for me, I will not make that mistake again, you know, if another executive asked me to do some of these things.

But Brian was a tremendous human. And you could see the outpouring of that with a lot of folks in the industry. I mean, Mattel put out a really nice statement. Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz put out a very nice, thoughtful statement on LinkedIn. Mattel team put out a nice statement on social media, as did Viacom. But this was tough. Brian was best in class. He transformed Hasbro. And I know I will very much miss talking to him.