Lego reports growth in all its markets

Brick by brick, the toymaker saw a 5% profit increase in 2022, top official says

FILE - A LEGO set made of its blocks featuring K-pop band BTS, is shown during a publicity event at a store in Seoul, South Korea, on March 2, 2023. Danish toy company Lego said Tuesday March 7, 2023 that its net profit increased by 5% in 2022 coming in at 13.9 billion kroner ($2 billion), up from 13.3 billion kroner a year earlier. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- With $2 billion in net profit, Lego says its toys experienced growth last year in all markets, particularly in the Americas and Western Europe, as the Danish company opened 155 stores worldwide to reach 904 locations.

The colorful building bricks are sold now in more than 130 countries. Lego said Tuesday that its profits increased by 5% in 2022 from the previous year and sales rose even as the company raised prices on higher-ticket toys.

The company said net profit rose to $2 billion from $1.9 billion in 2021. Sales were up 12%, while revenue grew 17% to $9.2 billion.

CEO Niels Christiansen called 2022 "a milestone year," when the privately held company celebrated its 90th anniversary.

We "landed the year beyond expectations on the back of exceptional growth last year and despite challenging market conditions," Christiansen said.

With inflation growing, Lego increased prices on about a quarter of its products, he said.

"The low-cost products were not affected. The increase was chiefly on our expensive products," Christiansen said. "Despite that, we saw our sales increase."

He said 48% of the company's products were new and that some top themes included Lego City, "Stars Wars" and Harry Potter.

Christiansen also highlighted collaborations, including one with Louis Vuitton to create windows and store displays for the Christmas season tied to the 200th birthday of the luxury fashion house.

"By doing a partnership with others, we can reach customers in a different way," he said. "In the case of Louis Vuitton, we hope to reach women, mothers. We do hope to have more girls playing with Legos."

This year, Lego expects single-digit revenue growth. Headquartered in Billund, Denmark, Lego has factories on three continents, including what it says is a new carbon-neutral factory in Vietnam. The company is planning another carbon-neutral factory in Richmond, Va.