Lego appoints new CEO

Published on: August 10th, 2017

Niels Christiansen takes over from Bali Padda, who was Lego’s first non-Danish CEO.

Lego has removed its British chief executive after just eight months in the top job, saying it has found a younger replacement earlier than expected.

The 61-year-old Bali Padda, who became the first non-Dane to lead the company when he started as chief executive in January, has been moved to a ‘special advisory role’ to make way for new boss Niels Christiansen (pictured), the former chief executive of industrial technology company Danfoss.

Lego’s chairman Jorgen Vig Knudstorp said the decision was not a reflection of Mr Padda’s performance, but because the Briton’s age meant that he would not be able to have a long tenure.

Jorgen told the Financial Times: “He has definitely not disappointed us. Bali knew that I would immediately look for a successor. Both Bali and I thought it would take a long time as it’s not a trivial matter. I was just very fortunate that, relatively early, we found the right person.”

In a statement, Mr Knudstorp said Bali, who has worked at the company for 15 years, played an “integral role in the turnaround” and created a “solid foundation from which to continue to transform the company”.

Niels Christiansen, who is 51 years old, starts as chief executive in October.

Niels commented: “As I look at the challenges facing this generation of children, the group’s mission, to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow, is more important and urgent than ever.”

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