Who’s Who – Mr. Steen Lauge Kokkenborg, General Manager of LEGO Japan
Date:September 2, 2016 NEWS
Mr. Kokkenborg started to work for LEGO after studying business management in Denmark. Then he left there in 1992 and worked for several other companies such as Adidas to expand international career. He rejoined LEGO in 2007 as Marketing Director Asia and Emerging markets. Since 2010 he has been taking a General Manager role in Asia market first in LEGO Korea and then transferred to LEGO Japan since March 2013.
Q: What is LEGO all about?
It is all about “FUN” and developing kids through “PLAY”. This also helps to create new way of problem solving. Kids can build anything either that is 2D or 3D with LEGO; you can just create anything from your imagination. It is also about “Pure Creativity” and “Building Your Stories.”
Q: Any news from the company?
Every year 30 -50% of our products in retailers are new.
Also LEGOLAND will open in Nagoya next year.
Q: Have you lived in other countries besides Japan?
Denmark (born there.) Also lived in Germany and Korea and travelled a lot to South America on business.
Q: What about your hobbies?
Take pictures of landscape and people, fishing and learning new language. I like cooking too, especially local produced food.
Q: What do you like about Japan?
Innovativeness, there are so much going on here. Also there are large population of sophisticated customers who are happy to spend for value products, so it does not matter how small your business is; even 1% of the population can be a big number. In terms of local business, if more companies focus to expand business outside of Japan market with high-quality products and services, there will be a huge opportunity for them.
Q: What do you miss about Denmark?
(pose) Getting home at 4 in the afternoon!
Q: What do you not like about Japan?
Hot and humid summer.
Q: What is your favorite food/dish?
All Japanese food, sushi, tempura, teppanyaki, but especially I like mentaiko (seasoned cod roe.)
I like roast pork in winter as Danish food and my wife’s homemade rye bread!
Q: If you become a governor of Tokyo now, what do you do/change?
Build many kindergartens. Japan has one of the countries who has the best-educated housewives with great ability, so I would like them to participate more in business society.
Q: If you have an unlimited time, what Japanese things would you like to make with LEGO?
Shinkansen (bullet train)!
Q: What do you expect from DCCJ?
To clarify its role, purpose and agenda.