Publications around the world have reacted to the LEGO Group’s first half results for 2019.
Following the publication of the LEGO Group’s first-half results for 2019, most newspapers and websites have covered the report favourably. The Guardian, the Telegraph and Retail Gazette are all reporting the positive news that sales are up, seeming to accept the company’s line that profit is down due to investment and that it will pay off in the long term.
One misunderstanding some outlets have made is in the best-selling themes – Marvel and The LEGO Movie 2 are listed as instrumental in the results, yet according to the LEGO Group’s statement are the seventh and eighth best performing ranges at best. That will actually be a disappointing result for The LEGO Movie 2 play theme, which would have been expected to be one of the top sellers this year.
An interesting point made by the Financial Times is that while the LEGO Group may have experienced a dip in profits to $300m, that figure is better than those reported by competitors Hasbro and Mattel. The former’s profits were $164m in the first half and the latter made a loss of $182m.
A big focus in the Yahoo coverage, as elsewhere, has been on the new stores that the LEGO Group will open, the majority being in China. The investment in new brand stores – as well as an overhaul of LEGO.com – shows a new attention being paid specifically to direct-to-consumer sales.
The importance of India as a new market has been highlighted by several outlets, including the Financial Times. “Within 10 years, there will be 100m kids in India living in middle-class families. They are strong into education and products like Lego are very high on the wish list. The idea would be to get on some kinds of journey like we are on in China,” Christiansen told the newspaper.
This followed comments he made when the results were announced: “We see an opportunity to reach more Indian children and families who value the benefits of learning through play. The growing middle class, importance of education and growing economy make India a logical next step in our efforts to reach many more children around the world.”
It seems that most newspapers and websites are giving the LEGO Group the benefit of the doubt, as Christiansen’s plan following disappointing 2017 results has yielded increased sales.