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Morning Sun
  • LEGO Education changes owners

  • While it may seem like a major change, business will continue as usual for LEGO Education employees in Pittsburg.

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  • While it may seem like a major change, business will continue as usual for LEGO Education employees in Pittsburg.
    As part of an announcement Wednesday, the LEGO Group is buying Pitsco’s share of their joint venture in LEGO Education and entering into a service agreement between the two companies for many of the services related to LEGO Education.
    “We are sorry to see the [Lego Education] joint venture as we know it come to an end, but we are excited about the future of Pitsco and our new partnership with the LEGO Group,” said Harvey Dean, Pitsco CEO. “Very little will change in services we provide to more than 8 million students each year. Pitsco will be positioned to better focus efforts on the K-12 education market in the U.S. and its broadening markets internationally.”
    Confused? Here’s the longer version: LEGO Group and Pitsco have had a joint venture in LEGO Education since 1997, but LEGO Group is now buying Pitsco’s 49 percent ownership effective January 1, 2014.
    “North America is [LEGO’s] largest market for education,” said Pitsco President Lisa Paterni. “It’s gorown through the partnership to be their largest market. They wanted to be closer to their market and be better leveraged in North America.”
    The second portion is that LEGO Group and Pitsco have entered into a service agreement that will see LEGO Education products for North America shipped out of and serviced through Pitsco’s facilities. LEGO Group will purchase warehousing, order entry, customer service, technical support, purchasing, graphics production and educator insights from Pitsco. The business and operations functions for LEGO Education will still be delivered by Pitsco employees in Pittsburg. To sum, the logistics end of LEGO Education will continue being provided by Pitsco.
    However, all 28 LEGO Education North America sales and marketing staffers now working for Pitsco will be offered jobs in the new LEGO Education North America company as potential employees of the LEGO Group.
    Paterni said that it will be a little bit strange, sad and different for Pitsco to change roles, but that they are happy to continue in partnership with the LEGO Group.
    “It’s a change in the fact that we had an impact and a voice in the joint venture, and now we won’t,” Paterni said. “We felt we impacted millions and millions of students because we had a voice as an owner. Although nobody will be losing their jobs, there will be a difference since we’ll be providing a service. We’re happy to be a part of being able to service teacher and schools. We’ll continue to provide great service in the days ahead, but it will be sad because we won’t be able to be as big a part of it as wee have been.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Current LEGO Education North America President Stephan Turnipseed will take on a new role in business development and strategic partnerships for the LEGO Group while a new president is projected to be on board in August.

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