Lego posts record revenue as global demand grows
Danish toy maker Lego has said its famous coloured building blocks were in high demand in most regions last year, helping its full-year revenue increase 6% to 37.9 billion kroner (£4.4 billion), the highest figure in the company's 85-year history.
The privately held group's net profit rose to 9.4 billion kroner (£1.1 billion) from 9.2 billion kroner.
Its British chief executive Bali Padda said he was "satisfied" with Lego's performance, adding that sales growth in the last six months of 2016 "was at more sustainable levels than previous years".
The toy maker was "encouraged" by sales in Europe, saw "strong potential" in China but sales were flat in US markets.
"We will continue to work closely with our retail partners to identify new opportunities to innovate, drive growth and engage children in this important market," said Mr Padda.
Mr Padda took over on January 1 from Joergen Vig Knudstorp, Lego's chief executive for the previous 12 years.
The Dane, who in 2004 became the first non-family member to head the group, is credited with making the company profitable again.
Upon stepping down as chief executive, he became the head of a new Lego entity.
"Innovation is critical to our success and each year around 60% of our portfolio is new products," Mr Padda said.
The group said that, on the whole, about 75 billion Lego pieces were sold in 2016 in more than 140 countries.
The group, based in western Denmark, has more than 19,000 employees around the world.
It does not release quarterly figures.