The recent opening of the new LEGO factory in Jiaxing has led to renewed attention on the company’s efforts to prevent Chinese manufacturer Lepin from producing clone products. LEGO Group spokespeople seem keen to illustrate just how determined they are to put a halt to the imitation products.
The Copenhagen Post reported comments from the LEGO Group that illustrate the level of concern:
“Lepin is pretty much copying the entire product and we are concerned about that,” Peter Kjær, the vice president of Lego’s judicial department, told DR Nyheder.
“Our lawyers share our belief that you’ll be given the treatment in the Chinese justice system that you deserve if you prepare the case properly.”
Kjær contends that while Lepin’s copies may be cheaper than Lego’s, they are also potentially dangerous to consumers. Copied products, he warned, can be of a poor quality and dangerous if the production method is not in order.
The LEGO Group’s plans for expansion in China are likely to be part of the reasoning behind the high profile action against Lepin.
“Lego has invested a lot of money in a push on China, so when a replica company like this gets going, Lego can lose part of its market share because confusion arises about the brand,” Thorbjørn Swanstrøm, an expert in brand protection, told DR Nyheder.
Lepin has courted further controversy this year, since as well as copying official LEGO designs the company also started to use fan designs found online.
To buy real, legitimate LEGO products, visit shop.LEGO.com.