Today, the LEGO Group revealed four new LEGO® sets celebrating classic Chinese culture and legends at the 3rd China International Import Exhibition (CIIE). This is the company’s largest scale of novelty unveils at the CIIE since 2018.
The new offerings range from within themes such as LEGO® DUPLO, the popular LEGO® Chinese Traditional Festival and the newly-launched LEGO® Monkie Kid.
LEGO® DUPLO Town Happy Childhood Moments taps into two critical moments of a toddlers’ life in China: Chinese New Year and kindergarten. It can support Chinese parents to teach their preschoolers about traditions of the lunar new year and key skills to prepare kindergarten life in a playful way. It is also the first LEGO DUPLO set that is customized for Chinese pre-school families.
LEGO® Story of Nian invites children to learn the old story about Nian and celebrates the Chinese new year with LEGO bricks. It features a brick-built Chinese residence with traditional decorations, a snowy scene that is brought to life with a posable Nian creature, a snowman figure and six minifigures including grandpa, grandma, three children and a person in an ox costume to mark the Year of the Ox in 2021.
LEGO® Spring Lantern Festival recreates the magical atmosphere of the festival which marks the end of the lunar new year celebrations. It features a brick-built Chinese garden with moon gates, pavilion, pond and bridge, a special ox lantern illuminated by a LEGO light brick as well as other must-have items during the festival like a rabbit lantern and a Tang Yuan rice ball.
To inspire children to learn more about Chinese traditions when building, illustrations are telling the legendary stories of Nian. The Lantern Festival is added on the building instructions of the two sets, which is the first time this kind of feature appears in the LEGO Chinese Traditional Festival theme.
LEGO® Monkie Kids’ Team Quadcopter, is a new set from the LEGO Monkie Kid theme. It presents the story of Monkie Kid’s team of heroes and their battle with Spider Queen and perfectly combines the modern hi-tech fantasy elements with the well-known Chinese story. The LEGO Monkie Kid theme was launched in May 2020 as the first LEGO theme inspired by a classic Chinese legend. The new set joins the range of 11 sets, which have already been released, to empower children to be brave, resilient and optimistic through creative play.
The LEGO® Story of Nian and LEGO® Spring Lantern Festival sets will be available in China and Asia Pacific markets from January 1st, 2021, and from January 10th, 2021 on LEGO.com and other markets in the world. The LEGO® DUPLO Town Happy Childhood Moments set will be available across LEGO branded retail stores and LEGO.com globally from January 1st 2021. The LEGO® Monkie Kids’ Team Quadcopter set will be available from March 1, 2021, together with another six new LEGO® Monkie Kid sets.
Paul Huang, Senior Vice President of the LEGO Group and General Manager of LEGO China, said “We are excited and proud of unveiling new products at the CIIE for the third year in a row. All these novelties are rooted firmly with the Chinese culture and values, and provide a common ground for children and families to build and play together. By doing this, we can bring the LEGO play closer to the hearts of Chinese consumers and support the children with learning through play experiences.”
Under the theme of “Rebuild the World,” the 378-square-meter LEGO Group booth at CIIE celebrates the endless imagination and unique ingenuity that kids possess. Besides a large line-up of toy and education products, a 2.7m (height) x 2m (width) installation made by 62,750 LEGO bricks is displayed at the booth, acting as a joyful symbol of hope and positivity. One hundred LEGO creations built by 100 Chinese kids are added on the globe, showcasing the inspirational creativity of children and their powerful imaginations to make sense of the world.
“We want to celebrate children’s creativity at our booth and provide the visitors the opportunity to see the world through the kids’ eyes. The LEGO System in Play is a fantastic platform for playful expression, unlocking kids’ endless creativity and inspiring a constant cycle of building, unbuilding and rebuilding,” Huang added.
Continue to invest in China, a strategic growth market
The LEGO Group is on the journey to bring the unique and creative LEGO play to more children in China and there is growing demand for the brand and affinity for creativity and learning through play in the market. Creativity is seen as a top skill by parents on China’s mainland for their children’s future success, according to LEGO Play Well Report 2020.
Since the 2nd CIIE which was held in November 2019, the number of LEGO branded retail stores on China’s mainland was almost doubled to 207 as of October 31, 2020. It is expected that another 80 new LEGO branded retail stores will be opened on China’s mainland in 2021, making the total number to reach 300 by the end of next year.
Niels B. Christiansen, Chief Executive Officer of the LEGO Group, said “We are very pleased with the progress we have made in China over the past year. We have continued to invest in bringing learning through play to many more children around the country and achieved double digit growth. Despite the challenges, we opened more than 80 new stores and launched a theme inspired by Chinese legend in the past 12 months. We remain confident in the long-term potential of the China market.”
Joining forces to build a better planet for all
The LEGO Group announced in September plans to invest up to US$400 million over three years to accelerate sustainability and social responsibility initiatives. By 2022, the LEGO Group aims to reach 8 million children around the world annually with learning through play through a range of activities with partners, in collaboration with the LEGO Foundation.
LEGO Foundation and the LEGO Group today announced that they have joined forces with China Braille Press, an affiliated agency to China Disabled Persons Federation (CDPF), to test the LEGO Braille Bricks in China with objectives of introducing a fun and engaging way to help Chinese children with vision impairment develop tactile skills and learn the braille system.
The testing program is being implemented in four blind schools in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Taian cities in China. It is the first time that the LEGO braille bricks toolkit is prototyped outside Latin-based languages. Currently the concept has launched in six Latin-based languages and the ambition is to implement a further five, bringing the total up to eleven languages across twenty countries by early 2021.
Stine Storm, Senior Play & Health Specialist at the LEGO Foundation, said “We are very excited to kick off the testing of LEGO Braille Bricks with local partners in China. We believe blind children should have equal access to learning through play opportunities, just like sighted children. Through inclusion, they will have the chance to learn a breadth of key skills such as communication, collaboration, joint problem-solving, etc. ”