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What we can learn from LEGO

By David Robertson | Published: February 26, 2015

LEGO announced its annual results for 2014 on February 25, and it was another stellar year for the Danish toymaker. Sales grew 13%, and profits grew 15%. As great as that is, that’s actually a decline from their seven-year average. Since 2007, the company’s sales have been growing at an average rate of 20% and profits at 37% per year. The company has now tripled its sales since 2008, and increased its profits by over 7100% in the same period. And they’re not cutting prices to boost growth – the company is stunningly profitable. As any parent can tell you, LEGO bricks are expensive – LEGO pays less than a dollar per pound for its raw material, ABS plastic, and sells its finished bricks for over fifty dollars per pound. Yet even with this price premium, the sets fly off the shelves. What’s even more striking about LEGO’s performance is that they compete in a very read more

Brick By Brick

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"A fascinating book. The story of how Lego came perilously close to disaster but then transformed itself into one of the most successful and innovative companies in the world serves both as an inspiration and an object lesson."

- Chris Anderson
former Editor-in-Chief of Wired and author of Makers and The Long Tail

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  • david robertson innovationAbout |David Robertson

    David Robertson is a Professor of Practice at the Wharton School where he teaches Innovation and Product Development in Wharton’s undergraduate, MBA, and executive education programs. From 2002 through 2010, Robertson was the LEGO Professor of Innovation and Technology Management at Switzerland’s Institute for Management Development (IMD), which received the #1 worldwide ranking by the Financial Times for its executive education programs. Robertson is the author of Brick by Brick: How LEGO Reinvented its Innovation System and Conquered the Toy Industry, and co-author of Enterprise Architecture as Strategy.
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  • Radio Host |Innovation Navigation

    innovation navigationIn his latest quest to understand innovation, David is also host of Innovation Navigation, a Wharton Business School Business radio program offering live, unscripted access to world-renowned thought leaders, executives, and faculty. As a Professor of Practice at the Wharton School, Robertson brings brilliant minds worldwide to share their innovation knowledge and experience to the... read more

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