Lego ends Shell collaboration after Greenpeace protest video goes viral

Toymaker ends £68 m deal after coming under pressure from environment group which accused it of "letting children down"

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The Independent Online

Danish toymaker Lego has announced it won't renew its long-standing contract with Shell following a viral Greenpeace campaign.

The group launched an online petition calling on the group to end the partnership, followed by a YouTube video in July this year, depicting happy Lego characters and Arctic animals in their natural habitat.

However, the serenity of the scene is disrupted after a Shell platform begins drilling with a vast amount of oil covering the ocean until the animals disappear completely while a Lego character portraying a Shell executive smokes a cigar.

More than 1 million people have signed the campaign urging the company to "stop playing" with the oil major, according to Greenpeace.  The YouTube video, titled "Lego: Everything is NOT awesome" has received close to six million views.


Lego initially rejected the petition, arguing that the partnership gave children access to "inspirational" toys and insisted that the dispute between Greenpeace and Shell, which it accuses of polluting the environment, should be handed separately.

But the toymaker has bowed to pressure and won't renew the contract. Lego currently sell its toys in 26 countries at petrol stations in a deal worth £68 million. In a statement, Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, chief executive of the Lego Group, said: We do not agree with the tactics used by Greenpeace that may have created misunderstandings among our stakeholders about the way we operate."

"We want to clarify that as things currently stand we will not renew the co-promotion contract with Shell when the present contract ends," he added.

Greenpeace said it was "super happy" and described it as a "massive victory" for the one people million who signed the online petition.