It's the world's second biggest toymaker but it's Lego's movie success which has boosted its latest sales and profits. As Hayley Platt reports it's also been voted one of the world's most improved global brands.
Lego has been building its empire since 1932. And it's still owned by the Kristiansen family who founded it in Denmark It now employs 14,000 staff and is sold in more than 140 countries. The company's latest results show a 16 percent rise in operating profit. Sales too were up 15 percent. Jørgen Vig Knudstorp is Lego's chief Exec. SOUNDBITE: Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, President and CEO, Lego, saying (English): "We're most pleased that we're seeing our core assortment continue to go from strength to strength so Lego City, Lego France, Lego Star Wars are all among our biggest contributing lines." The group saw double digit sales growth in its largest market, the US. And in the UK, France and China. The figures for Central and Northern Europe were almost as good. Though things haven't always been so concrete. Only a decade ago Lego was close to financial collapse. Cost cutting and new lines like Chima, Friends and LEGO City have all helped resurrect the brand - it's just overtaken Ferrari in Brand Finance's most powerful list Robert Haigh is their spokesman. SOUNDBITE: Robert Haigh, Brand Finance, saying (English): "The jump this year really is down to the movie. Lego continues to innovate. It's been on a track to success for the last ten years but the movie is what's given it a real boost this year and there's been rumours of a second film which will give it a further boost." Lego may not have won an oscar for its debut movie but it did make sure some of this year's other hopefuls didn't go home empty handed. SOUNDBITE: Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, President and CEO, LEGO, saying (English): "Obviously it's a wonderful way of celebrating the Lego brand, I just notice how people are finding it funny and amusing. We can't ask people to grab an oscar made out of Lego bricks but they want to grab it and I think it just shows the global appeal and enthusiasm there is for Lego bricks." The movie was also a critical and commercial success, grossing more than $461 million at the U.S. box office. Lego is now planning to build on that success with a second movie in 2018.