Copenhagen - Danish toymaker Lego posted on Friday what it called an "exceptional" net profit jump of 36% for the first half of 2012 as it announced it would be recruiting 1,000 new employees this year.
"Once again the first half of the financial year exceeds our expectations, and the financial result is exceptional --especially in view of general developments in the world toy market," Lego group chief executive Joergen Vig Knudstorp said in a statement.
But, he cautioned, "it is still too early to provide estimates on the expected result for the full year because the closing months of the year are crucial for our business."
Sales of the iconic colourful building blocks have done particularly well in the United States, where they were up 23%, and in Europe, where they were up 10%, the company said.
The gains translated into a 36.1% gain in net profit on the same period last year for the unlisted company, the world's fourth biggest toymaker. Operating profit shot up by 41.7%.
Knudstorp said the new Lego Friends line aimed at girls between the ages of five and nine had been an "astonishing" success.
Lego, a family-owned group headquartered in Billund, Denmark, has 8% of the global toys market, which is dominated by Mattel.
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