LEGO is not the only toy brand to hail from Denmark, another example is the BR toystore. BR was started in 1950 (around the same time as LEGO started making plastic bricks), but became a toystore only in 1963 – originally they sold paper and party items. Today BR has many stores, some very large, all over the Nordic countries and a few other locations as well. Basically BR is like the “Toys’R’Us” of northern Europe. I’d say it’s the Starbucks of toys in Finland, as they have shops everywhere. In fact, there are more BR shops in Finland than there are Starbucks here.
BR logo is of a smiling guard, probably a Royal Danish Life Guard – somewhat similar to a British Queen’s Guard in appearance – with the letters BR printed on the tall fur cap. This guard has become BR’s mascot, Fætter BR or Cousin BR, so named after one of the founders (and the store’s Danish name). If Wikipedia is to be believed, the original design is by Henning Hougaard.
This summer – to celebrate 50 years of selling toys – BR is releasing a minifigure version of their mascot: the 5001121 BR LEGO Minifigure (inside a familiar polybag). Internet says the minifigure is to be released in August 2013, but I managed to buy one in Stockholm, Sweden (at the Gallerian) in early July – and some have bought them already in May.
Here’s what it looks like both at the store and at home:
Note: You can click the images for larger versions.
The set consists of just five pieces, no accessories then. The minifigure head is one-sided. Price was 25 Swedish crowns (incl. 25% VAT), the same price as they were asking for the LEGO Minifigures Series 10. The latter are of course of better value thanks to their accessories, but the BR minifigure may end up being rarer.