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Denmark-Based Lego Releases 2013 Results


And let's turn to toys, now. Denmark-based Lego is reporting an 11 percent growth in revenue for 2013, meaning the company's sales have quadrupled in less than 10 years. Sidsel Overgaard reports.

SIDSEL OVERGAARD, BYLINE: The extent of Lego's awesomeness may not be entirely reflected in today's announcement, since it doesn't include revenue tied to the chart-topping Lego movie released just this month. The film itself is a project of Warner Brothers. But in case you failed to notice, it's also essentially one big product placement for Lego. Movie aside, 2013's 11 percent growth could actually be considered a cool-down for Lego, which a year earlier, saw a 25 percent increase in revenue. But CEO Joergen Vig Knudstorp emphasizes that Lego has enjoyed an almost unheard of nine straight years of growth.

JOERGEN VIG KNUDSTORP: The company is just a lot bigger than it used to be. And when you're growing so much in a flat market you reach a certain size where it's not so much about percentage, but can you continue to add absolute volume to the company.

OVERGAARD: Knudstorp says every year a 60 to 70 percent of Lego's products are new. 2013's big launch was a series of talking animals called "Legends of Chima."


KNUDSTORP: It is, to us, very simple to say, extremely hard to do, in practice, to constantly reinvent our core business.

OVERGAARD: But on top of strong growth in the world's emerging markets, Knudstorp says that innovation is exactly what continues to ensure Lego's success. For NPR News, I'm Sidsel Overgaard in Billund, Denmark. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

After taking a semester off from college to intern with Vermont Public Radio in 1999, Sidsel was hooked. She went on to work as a reporter and producer at WNYC in New York and WAMU in Washington, DC before moving to New Mexico in 2007. As KUNM’s Conservation Beat reporter, Sidsel covered news from around the state having to do with protection of our earth, air and water. She also kept up a blog, earth air waves, filled with all the bits that can’t be crammed into the local broadcast of Morning Edition and All Things Considered. When not interviewing inspiring people (or sheep), Sidsel could be found doing underdogs with her daughters at the park.