The LEGO Group has revealed five new LEGO® sets with inspiration from Chinese culture and traditions at the 5th China International Import Expo (CIIE) today. This represents the fifth consecutive year that the company debuted novelties with rich Chinese elements at the expo.
The new sets include:
LEGO® Lunar New Year Display has two exquisite models capturing many iconic traditional festive symbols. One model has buildable golden ingots in the traditional Yuan Bao design, koi fish for good luck, red pockets symbolizing good wishes, and the “Zhao Cai Jin Bao” greeting that welcomes fortune and treasures into the home. The other model has buildable peony flowers with the “Hua Kai Fu Gui” greeting, meaning blooming prosperity and happiness.
LEGO® Lunar New Year Parade recreates the joyous atmosphere of a traditional parade with three colorful, connectible floats. See how the giant rabbit moves when the Year of Rabbit float is pushed. Check out the drummer banging their drum on the musician’s float. And look out for the moving dragon and people dressed as LEGO characters like Monkie Kid on the LEGO float. It creates a spectacular brick-built Lunar New Year parade.
LEGO® Monkey King Ultra Mech is a successor to the LEGO® Monkey King Warrior Mech which was unveiled in 2020 during the launch of LEGO® Monkie Kid, the LEGO Group’s first Chinese inspired theme inspired by the classic story of Monkey King. LEGO® Monkey King Ultra Mech features upgrades and add-on accessories on the model, with Monkie Kid controlling the mech with its super powers.
LEGO® DUPLO® Town Learn About Chinese Culture introduces curious toddlers to the traditional Chinese culture. Parents can guide the little learners through fascinating aspects of Chinese traditions, from food to music, games to traditional dress. Kids can meet their hosts over a cup of tea and a moon cake in the café or explore cultural traditions in the activity center and temple. They can also simply play with the family under the shade of the blossom tree.
LEGO® Money Tree features a tree decorated with tangerines, red envelopes and coins which represent prosperity and good luck in the Chinese tradition. The model makes an eye-catching display item and brings extra fun to the lunar new year celebrations.
All the five new sets will be available in China and other markets from December 25th, 2022. They are displayed at the 396-square-meter LEGO Playground (name of the LEGO Group booth at the CIIE) which is built to showcase the latest LEGO toy and educational products and celebrate the importance of play at the LEGO Group’s 90th anniversary.
Paul Huang, Senior Vice President of the LEGO Group and General Manager of LEGO China, said “As a five-year exhibitor, we are excited to continue bringing the creative and playful new LEGO sets inspired by local culture and traditions to Chinese consumers at the CIIE”.
“We also want to invite people of all ages to play at our booth, because we believe in one simple mission; inspiring and developing the builders of tomorrow. We believe that play is crucial to the wellbeing and happiness of the whole family in the rapidly changing world.”
The LEGO® Play Well Study 2022 showed that there is increasing affinity of learning through play among Chinese parents and children, with 93% of parents on China’s mainland seeing play as key in helping kids learn new things and 96% of children said play helps them try new ideas and do new things.
The research also found that play’s benefits extend beyond children to the whole family, with 95% of Chinese parents saying play builds strong family bonds. 96% said play improves family happiness and welling, and 95% of them thought that play helps them relax as a family.
Continued strategic investments in China
The LEGO Group has been stepping up its investment in China over the past decade and achieved strong double-digit growth in recent years. It has been investing in building the brand, expanding retail presence, innovating its portfolio, driving sustainability progress, increasing manufacturing capacity and digitalization globally and in China.
It has opened over 380 LEGO brand retail stores in 105 cities across China compared with 60 stores in 18 cities in 2018. It announced expansions of its manufacturing capacity in Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province in January 2022 to support long-term growth in the region.
“We feel humbled and proud of our achievements in China, especially during the past five years where we have seen our retail footprint expand to more than 100 cities. The resilience and vitality of the Chinese market, despite the pandemic, further strengthens our confidence in the prospects of the market and we will continue our strategic initiatives to bring LEGO® Play to even more Chinese children,” said Huang.
The LEGO Group plans to open another 80 new brand retail stores in China in 2023. It will also keep innovating retail experiences to create meaningful experiences at every touchpoint and enable shoppers and families to connect with the brand even closer.
Building a better future for children
The LEGO Group believes every child should have an opportunity to achieve their potential. And learning-through-play is a powerful way to develop skills that will allow children to tackle challenges that lie ahead.
The company also announced today a new strategic partnership with China Development Research Foundation to roll out a “Prescription for Play” program, aiming at supporting the development of parental and caregiver behaviors towards learning-through-play at homes. Through distributing play materials at local healthcare centers and providing caregivers with one-on-one guidance and instructions of parent-child play in Bijie City, Guizhou Province, it is expected that 250,000 children aged 18 to 48 months will benefit from the program in 2023.