Is LEGO Owned By Disney?

Is LEGO Owned By Disney

In the realm of entertainment and toys, two brands reign supreme: Disney, the multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate, and LEGO, the world-renowned toy company. Both have been part of countless childhoods, shaping imaginations and creating memorable experiences with their unique offerings.

Given their wide-reaching influence and the numerous collaborations between them, it’s not unusual for some to wonder if there’s a deeper business relationship at play. Specifically, the question often arises: “Does Disney own LEGO?”

This article aims to address that question head-on, diving deep into the business models, ownership structures, and collaborative history of these two iconic companies.

By the end of this exploration, readers will have a clear understanding of the relationship between Disney and LEGO, and whether or not the House of Mouse has a stake in the brick-building empire. Let’s embark on this enlightening journey together.

Overview of Disney

The Walt Disney Company, known simply as Disney, has become a household name across the globe. Founded on October 16, 1923, by brothers Walt and Roy O. Disney, the company started as a small animation studio named the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio. Their early work focused primarily on creating animated shorts, such as the widely popular “Steamboat Willie” in 1928, which marked the debut of the iconic character, Mickey Mouse.

Disney’s business model revolves around its diverse portfolio of entertainment assets. The company operates through various business segments: Media Networks, Parks, Experiences and Products, Studio Entertainment, and Direct-to-Consumer & International. Each of these segments plays a crucial role in the overall success and profitability of the company.

  • Media Networks include a vast array of broadcast, cable, radio, publishing, and digital businesses across two divisions – the Disney/ABC Television Group and ESPN Inc.
  • Parks, Experiences and Products consists of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and numerous other theme parks and resorts around the world. This segment also includes Disney Cruise Line, Disney Vacation Club, and Adventures by Disney. The “products” part of this division refers to Disney’s extensive merchandise sold through retail stores both physically and online.
  • Studio Entertainment encompasses the company’s vast movie and TV show production and distribution arms, which includes Walt Disney Studios, Pixar, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm (Star Wars franchise), and 20th Century Studios, among others.
  • Direct-to-Consumer & International is Disney’s newest business segment, which includes streaming services like Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+.

Disney has a long history of acquiring other companies to expand its portfolio, including Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Entertainment, Lucasfilm, and 21st Century Fox. However, despite these acquisitions, the question remains: Does Disney’s wide reach extend to owning the LEGO Group? We will delve into this question further in the subsequent sections of this article.

Relationship between Disney and LEGO

The relationship between Disney and LEGO has been characterized by a successful and enduring partnership, rather than ownership. The two companies have been collaborating for many years, resulting in the creation of various Disney-themed LEGO sets that have been popular among consumers worldwide.

Their collaboration began in earnest in 1999 when LEGO released a Duplo Mickey Mouse set, marking the start of the LEGO Disney licensed theme. Since then, the partnership has flourished, leading to a multitude of Disney-themed LEGO sets that span across various Disney franchises.

  1. Disney Princess Line: Launched in 2014, this line includes sets based on popular Disney princesses from films like Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, and Frozen. These sets allow children to re-create scenes from their favorite Disney princess films.
  2. Star Wars Line: One of the most successful LEGO lines, the Star Wars sets began in 1999, coinciding with the release of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. The line has since covered nearly all films and significant television series within the Star Wars franchise.
  3. Marvel Super Heroes Line: As a result of Disney’s acquisition of Marvel, LEGO has been able to produce sets based on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, introducing characters such as Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor into the LEGO world.
  4. Mickey and Friends Line: Aimed at younger audiences, this line focuses on Mickey Mouse and his friends, with sets designed to be simple and fun to build.

These collaborative efforts have been beneficial for both companies. For LEGO, the partnership has allowed them to tap into the rich and diverse characters and stories of Disney. For Disney, LEGO sets provide another avenue to engage fans and drive merchandise sales. This mutual benefit has solidified the relationship between the two companies, but as we’ll explore later, it doesn’t equate to ownership.

Ownership Structure of Disney

As a publicly traded company, The Walt Disney Company is owned by numerous individual and institutional shareholders who own Disney’s common stock. As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, the largest shareholders typically include institutional investors like Vanguard Group, BlackRock, and State Street Corporation, among others.

Disney’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “DIS”. Anyone who purchases Disney’s stock becomes a part-owner of the company, albeit usually a very small one. Therefore, Disney doesn’t have a single owner but is rather owned by these thousands of shareholders.

The company’s governance is handled by a Board of Directors, which is elected by the shareholders. As of my last update, the board consists of independent directors and executive management from the company. The board is responsible for overseeing and directing the company’s strategy, operations, and business affairs.

It’s important to note that even though Disney has acquired many companies over the years, these acquisitions have been financed through various means, including cash, debt, and issuing more Disney stock. The companies that Disney acquires typically become wholly-owned subsidiaries of Disney, meaning that Disney owns 100% of their equity.

However, the ownership structure of a publicly traded company like Disney is complex and can change over time due to various factors, including stock purchases and sales by shareholders, share buybacks by the company, and the issuance of new stock by the company.

Ownership Structure of LEGO

The LEGO Group, unlike Disney, is not a publicly traded company. Instead, it is a private company that has remained largely within the hands of the founding family since its inception. LEGO was founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen, a carpenter from Billund, Denmark. The company has passed from father to son and is now owned by Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, a grandchild of the founder.

In 2017, the LEGO Group announced a significant shift in its ownership structure when the Kirkbi Invest A/S, a holding and investment company controlled by the Kristiansen family, transferred the majority of their ownership (75%) to the LEGO Brand Group. The LEGO Brand Group is an entity specifically aimed at protecting and promoting the LEGO brand’s longevity and success. Despite this change, the family maintains a controlling interest in the company.

Therefore, LEGO’s ownership structure is quite different from Disney’s. The LEGO Group is a family-owned business with the main objective of fostering creativity and learning through play, as represented by its iconic interlocking brick system. The company’s mission, “to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow,” has remained consistent throughout its history.

In the next section, we will address the central question of this article: Does Disney own LEGO?

Does Disney Own LEGO?

After examining the ownership structures of both The Walt Disney Company and The LEGO Group, the answer to the question “Does Disney own LEGO?” is a clear and straightforward: No.

While Disney and LEGO have a robust and longstanding partnership, this relationship does not extend to any ownership stake. Disney, a publicly traded company, is owned by a myriad of shareholders who own its common stock. Conversely, LEGO is a privately held company, primarily owned by the founding Kristiansen family through their holding company, Kirkbi Invest A/S, and the LEGO Brand Group.

It’s worth noting that while Disney has a history of acquiring other companies to expand its portfolio, LEGO is not one of them. Despite the numerous Disney-themed LEGO sets that have resulted from the collaboration between the two companies, this does not imply any ownership stake by Disney in LEGO or vice versa.

In short, while Disney and LEGO’s partnership has led to the creation of numerous beloved toy sets, the relationship between the two companies is purely collaborative and does not involve any cross-ownership.

here’s a table illustrating some of the notable Disney-themed LEGO sets resulting from the collaboration between Disney and LEGO:

LEGO Set NameDisney FranchiseRelease YearSet Details
LEGO Duplo Mickey Mouse ClubhouseMickey Mouse Clubhouse2016This set includes Mickey and Minnie Mouse figures, a buildable clubhouse, and several other accessories.
Cinderella’s Dream CastleDisney Princess2018This set features a castle with movable dance floor, a revolving fireplace, and a vanity. It includes two mini-doll figures: Cinderella and Prince Charming.
Elsa’s Magical Ice PalaceFrozen2017This set brings to life Elsa’s ice palace with a grand entrance doors, a kitchen, a table and stools, and a grand staircase leading up to Elsa’s bedroom. It includes Elsa and Anna mini-dolls, plus Olaf and Marshmallow figures.
Millennium FalconStar Wars2017This detailed representation of the fastest ship in the Star Wars galaxy is the largest and most detailed LEGO Star Wars Millennium Falcon model ever created. It includes mini-figures of Han Solo, Chewbacca, and others.
Avengers Compound BattleMarvel Super Heroes2019This set includes an Avengers compound with a two-level office, a helicopter, and an offroader. It comes with mini-figures of Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Nebula, and an Outrider, plus Hulk and Thanos big figures.
The Disney CastleDisney2016This highly detailed LEGO model comes with an array of exciting Disney-themed features and functions. It includes 5 mini-figures: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, and Tinker Bell.
Table showing

Impact of the Disney and LEGO Relationship

The partnership between Disney and LEGO has had a significant impact on both companies, their consumer base, and the toy industry as a whole.

  1. Increased Product Variety: Disney’s extensive catalog of characters, stories, and franchises has allowed LEGO to significantly diversify its product offerings. This has resulted in a broad range of Disney-themed LEGO sets that cater to different interests and age groups, from princess castles for young girls to intricate Star Wars spaceships for older fans.
  2. Expanded Market Reach: The collaboration has enabled both companies to reach wider audiences. For LEGO, leveraging popular Disney franchises has likely attracted consumers who might not otherwise buy LEGO sets. For Disney, the partnership has provided another medium through which they can engage fans and extend their reach into the toy market.
  3. Enhanced Brand Image: The association with Disney, a brand known for its creativity and focus on quality family entertainment, aligns well with LEGO’s brand image. Similarly, LEGO’s reputation for educational and creative play enhances Disney’s image. This mutual reinforcement of positive brand values has likely benefited both companies.
  4. Increased Sales and Revenue: The popularity of Disney franchises has likely contributed to strong sales of Disney-themed LEGO sets. For Disney, the licensing agreement with LEGO contributes to its consumer products revenue, although the exact financial details are typically not disclosed.
  5. Innovation in Product Development: The collaboration has also led to innovation, as LEGO designers work to encapsulate Disney’s storytelling magic into the brick-building format. This has resulted in sets that not only depict scenes from Disney films but also feature innovative design elements, such as moving parts and intricate details.

In conclusion, while Disney and LEGO maintain separate ownership, their ongoing partnership has been mutually beneficial and has greatly influenced their products, their brands, and their market presence. This relationship serves as a prime example of successful brand collaboration in the toy industry.


The Walt Disney Company and the LEGO Group, two titans in their respective industries, have fostered a remarkable partnership over the years. Through a range of collaborative efforts, they have created an array of beloved Disney-themed LEGO sets that have captured the imaginations of children and adults alike. Yet, despite the deep and enduring nature of their partnership, it does not include an ownership stake.

Disney, a publicly traded company, is owned by a myriad of shareholders who own its common stock. On the other hand, LEGO is a privately held company primarily owned by the founding Kristiansen family. Therefore, the answer to the question “Does Disney own LEGO?” is a resounding no.

This relationship serves as an excellent example of how two companies, each powerful and successful in its own right, can collaborate to mutual benefit without an ownership relationship. Together, Disney and LEGO continue to captivate audiences worldwide, fueling creativity, and inspiring imaginative play across generations. Despite the lack of ownership ties, the collaborative magic between these two brands shows no signs of fading, promising more innovative and enchanting creations in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Q: Who owns LEGO?

A: LEGO is a privately held company, primarily owned by the Kristiansen family, the descendants of founder Ole Kirk Kristiansen, through their holding company, Kirkbi Invest A/S, and the LEGO Brand Group.

2. Q: Who owns Disney?

A: Disney is a publicly traded company, owned by numerous individual and institutional shareholders who own Disney’s common stock. Major institutional shareholders often include investment firms like Vanguard Group and BlackRock.

3. Q: When did Disney and LEGO start collaborating?

A: The collaboration between Disney and LEGO began in 1999 with the release of a Duplo Mickey Mouse set.

4. Q: Does Disney own any part of LEGO?

A: No, Disney does not own any part of LEGO. While the two companies have a longstanding collaborative partnership, this does not include an ownership stake.

5. Q: What are some of the Disney-themed LEGO sets?

A: There are numerous Disney-themed LEGO sets that span across various Disney franchises. Some examples include the LEGO Duplo Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Cinderella’s Dream Castle, Elsa’s Magical Ice Palace from Frozen, the Star Wars Millennium Falcon, and the Avengers Compound Battle from Marvel Super Heroes.

6. Q: Has Disney ever owned LEGO?

A: No, Disney has never owned LEGO. Despite the numerous collaborations between the two companies, this has never included an ownership stake by Disney in LEGO or vice versa.

7. Q: Do the Disney-themed LEGO sets mean that Disney owns LEGO?

A: No, the existence of Disney-themed LEGO sets is a result of a licensing agreement between Disney and LEGO. It does not imply that Disney owns LEGO. LEGO pays Disney for the rights to create sets based on Disney’s intellectual property.

8. Q: How does the Disney and LEGO partnership benefit both companies?

A: The partnership allows LEGO to tap into Disney’s rich array of characters and storylines, resulting in a diverse range of product offerings. For Disney, LEGO sets provide another avenue to engage fans and drive merchandise sales. Both companies also benefit from the positive reinforcement of their brand images.


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Disney and LEGO Quiz

1. Who owns LEGO?

2. Who owns Disney?

3. When did Disney and LEGO start collaborating?

4. What was the first LEGO set to be released under the Disney license?

5. What is the most expensive LEGO set ever sold?

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