Covid drives Lego frenzy

Danish toy manufacturer Lego has had a record-breaking year: Covid-19 lockdowns pushed demand and CEO Niels Christiansen's digital transformation paid dividends.



Lego's worldwide turnover grew by 13 % to 43.7 billion Danish kroner (5.9 billion euros), while its operating profit rose 19 % to 12.9 billion Danish kroner (1.7 billion euros). Net profits grew to 1.3 billion euros.


After Christiansen became CEO of the then-onerous company four years ago, he steered it out of difficulties by focusing on digitisation and a targeted expansion of its product range. Last year, the number of visitors to Lego's e-commerce platform doubled. The Danish brand was also able to reach more adults: "More families play and learn together with Lego bricks. We see an increasing amount of adults enjoying our more challenging sets", as Belgian newspaper De Tijd quotes the CEO.


250 new stores

However, the digital transformation is far from finished, according to Christiansen. His company wants to recruit hundreds of digital experts, such as computer specialists and website developers, in the coming years. "We have a solid digital base, but we must move faster. The past year has shown the importance of having an agile, responsive business built on strong digital foundations", he told the BBC.


Despite the pandemic, Lego opened 134 new stores in 2020, 91 of which were in China. The physical expansion will also continue this year, with 120 additional stores opening - two-thirds of which again are in China. According to Christiansen, the stores are primarily intended to boost Lego's brand awareness in new regions.