Jørgen Vig Knudstorp (DK)
Prestation: Creative learning and problem solving
Jørgen Vig Knudstorp is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President of the LEGO Group. Based on the iconic LEGO® brick, the company is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of play materials.
Founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen, the LEGO Group remains a privately held company, owned by the third and fourth generation of the founding family. The company has its headquarters in Billund, Denmark, and main offices in Enfield, USA, London, UK, Shanghai, China, and Singapore. With more than 14,000 employees based in 35 countries, Jørgen Vig Knudstorp is the CEO of a global organisation with an ambition to eventually reach every child in every country with a LEGO play experience.
Jørgen Vig Knudstorp joined the LEGO Group in 2001 as Director with responsibility for specific strategic development efforts, and quickly progressed to take on top management positions within strategic development and Corporate Affairs.
In October 2004, he was appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President of the LEGO Group with the primary task of securing the LEGO Group’s survival in a time of crisis and subsequently preparing the company for growth. With a clear strategy of refocusing on the core business and the potential of the LEGO brick, the LEGO Group has undergone a significant financial and commercial revitalization, more than quadrupling its sales during the 10 years Jørgen Vig Knudstorp has been the CEO.
Currently Jørgen Vig Knudstorp’s main focus is to oversee the efforts towards the LEGO Group’s aspiration of innovating and globalizing the LEGO System in Play.
Jørgen Vig Knudstorp has stated that he sees his dedication to the further expansion of the LEGO System in Play and the creative play experience to be his life mission.
Jørgen Vig Knudstorp holds a Ph.D. in business economics focusing on superior value creation based on the particular configuration of a company’s key assets. His research was carried out at MIT in Boston, USA, and at Aarhus University in Denmark. During 1995-2000, Jørgen Vig Knudstorp taught and wrote on how the economics of value creation influences organization, leadership and business strategy. This work formed the foundation for Jørgen Vig Knudstorp’s career (1998-2001) in consulting with McKinsey before he joined the LEGO Group.
Positions of trust and awards:
- IMD School of Management: Foundation board member since 2006
- Selected for “Young Global Leaders” in 2006 (a division of World Economic Forum in Davos)
- Selected as “Leader of the Year” in Denmark in 2006
- Recipient of the Order of Dannebrog in 2012
Place of birth and living: Born November 21, 1968 in Fredericia, Denmark and grew up in that area. Since then Jørgen has lived in London, Paris, Boston, Aarhus and Copenhagen. Today he, his wife, and their four children reside in Fredericia.
Jørgen Vig Knudstorp holds a BA (econ.) from Aarhus University, Denmark, a MSc+MBA (econ.) from Cranfield University, UK, and a Ph.D from Aarhus University and MIT, USA.
Creativity and structured creative problem solving is the most important currency for children of the 21st century. It enables them to discover for themselves what they need to learn and problem solve.
Plays is a superior way of developing such skills.
Throughout its history The LEGO Group has developed and refined its global approach to this and scaled it. Jørgen Vig Knudstorp will elaborate on how The LEGO Group is doing this – in terms of working deliberately with Culture, Leadership and a coherent business system.