The LEGO Group has announced that prices of certain sets will rise later this year as a result of ‘global economic challenges’, including ‘increased raw material and operating costs’.
Despite company profits soaring over the past couple of years, reaching a staggering £1.5bn in 2021, the LEGO Group has ‘taken the decision to increase the price on some of our sets’. Exactly which sets will face price rises has not been disclosed, but all changes will apparently come into effect in August and September, and roughly a quarter of the current portfolio will be impacted.
We also know that it won’t be a blanket increase: the exact price rise will depend on the size of the set in question, with some products seeing a single-digit percentage increase, and a higher price bump on ‘larger, more complex’ sets. According to a statement shared on the LEGO Ambassador Network, rising costs of raw materials and operations are at the root of this decision.
“Putting consumers first is at the heart of what we do as a company, and for some time, we have absorbed these costs to keep pricing stable,” the LEGO Group said. “We will continue to work to ensure our products offer great value and fully recognise how important this is to our fans and everyone who love our products.”
This isn’t actually the first time the LEGO Group has changed the prices of its sets this year, of course: in January, dozens of sets saw incremental price changes in Europe, apparently to ensure consistency between different mainland countries. Some rose by as much as 28% in the UK as a result, including 10255 Assembly Square, while others – like 21034 London – dropped by as much as 22%.
Most price changes at that time were actually closer to a 5% or 10% swing, but the increased costs of some products were at least offset by those that can now be picked up for a little less cash. The changes being implemented later this year are all in one direction, though: up.
In the same statement on the LAN, the Community Engagement Team emphasised that prices are ultimately determined by retailers (at least beyond LEGO.com and LEGO Stores) – but if RRPs are changing, wholesale prices are presumably going up too. We’ve seen third-party retailers in the UK adjust prices up or down to match the January changes, but in some instances they’ve kept the original, higher RRP.
While we don’t know for certain exactly which sets are going to face the biggest increases this time round, the LEGO Group’s reference to ‘single-digit’ percentage increases for some sets and ‘higher’ increases for ‘larger, more complex’ products suggests the LEGO for Adults portfolio could be about to experience price bumps of 10% or more.
The knock-on effect of this announcement, of course, is that it encourages us to pick up as many sets as possible before any price increases come into play. It’s cynical, but also inevitable – so if you’ve had your eye on any direct-to-consumer sets, it genuinely is best to buy them before August. At least you should be able to score a free LEGO Castle set for doing so this month…