Ask a LEGO Fan

New Set Prices

Posted in Marketplace by lfanquestions on August 22, 2009

JD writes:

Hello,

I recently read a Brother Brick post about your question blog and decided to e-mail you one that I have been thinking about concerning pricing..

Lego recently released two large sets in two different themes: the “Republic Dropship with AT-OT Walker” and the “Medieval Market Village” sets. Now the Village set includes 1601 pieces for 100$ whereas the Clone Wars set is more than double at 250$ for 1756 pieces – only one hundred pieces more! Is it the trademark costs with George Lucas that jacked up the price? Is it the theme? I know they have the same amount of minifigs, so is it the bigger pieces

Thanks for your time

Dear JD,

10193 Medieval Market Village has an excellent price per piece ratio of 6.24 cents (USD).  Several factors likely led to this low price.  First, the set contains a large quantity of small plate elements, which do not cost as much to produce as larger specialized elements.  Second, this set has been sold primarily at LEGO Brand Stores and online at Shop at Home.  Typically retailers take around one third of the final retail set cost.   In this case, TLG is the middleman and can reduce the final price and keep a similar amount of profit.

10195 Republic Dropship is a set designed for the large Star Wars collector market.   In my opinion the set is overpriced by at least $50.  But as my father says: “An item is worth what someone else is willing to pay for it.”  Clearly, Star Wars fans are still purchasing this set.  Licensing fees are likely high from Lucas but the line has been very profitable for TLG.

Small Star Wars sets often have great price per piece ratios.  This is because volume of sales more than makes up for the minimal profit per set for TLG.  Exclusive sets, such as the dropship, will not sell as many copies as the latest SW battlepack.  Lower sales could be a factor in the higher price.

Sincerely,
LFan

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