The name 'LEGO' is an abbreviation of the two Danish words "leg godt", meaning "play well". It’s our name and it’s our ideal.
The LEGO Group was founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen. The company has passed from father to son and is now owned by Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, a grandchild of the founder.
It has come a long way over the past 80 years - from a small carpenter’s workshop to a modern, global enterprise that is now, in terms of sales, the world’s fourth-largest manufacturer of toys.
The LEGO brick is our most important product. This is why we are proud to have been named twice – “Toy of the Century”. Our products have undergone extensive development over the years – but the foundation remains the traditional LEGO brick.
Ole Kirk Kristiansen, master carpenter and joiner, establishes his business in the village of Billund, Denmark. His firm manufactures stepladders, ironing boards, stools and wooden toys.
His son, Godtfred Kirk Christiansen, starts working in the business at the age of 12.
The company and its products now adopt the name LEGO, formed from the Danish words "LEg GOdt" ("play well"). Later, it is realised that in Latin the word means "I put together".
The firm has 6-7 employees.
The business manufactures its firs LEGO wooden duck and markets “Kirk's Sandgame” its first construction toy.
The LEGO Group is the first in Denmark to buy a plastic injection-moulding machine for toy production. The machine costs DKK 30,000. By comparison, the revenue of the firm this year is DKK 450,000.
The Automatic Binding Bricks get a new name: "LEGO Mursten" ("LEGO Bricks").
The name LEGO is printed inside all bricks.
After further developing the LEGO Bricks, the company launches the revolutionary "LEGO System of Play" – creating an new play platform.
The first real export of LEGO begins. First country is Sweden.
The current LEGO stud-and-tube coupling system is patented. The new coupling principle makes models much more stable.
Ole Kirk Kristiansen passes away and Godtfred Kirk Christiansen becomes head of the company.
Model sets, complete with building instructions, are launched as a natural addition to existing Basic and Supplementary sets.
LEGOLAND® Billund opens its gates on 7th June and attracts 625,000 visitors in its first season, 3000 on the opening day.
The DUPLO series for under-fives is launched internationally.
LEGOLAND mini figures with movable arms and legs
Base plates with road markings