Lego takes over entertainment giant Merlin in mega £5.9bn deal

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The company, which headed Madame Tussauds waxworks and Alton Towers, theme park is now owned by a consortium including Lego’s Danish founders, Kirkbi.

The other partners are private equity buyer Blackstone and the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board.

Kirkbi has a 30% stake in the entertainment and theme park business and now controls a range of theme parks and attractions across the UK, including Sea Life, Peppa Pig World of Play, Chessington World of Adventures and the London Dungeons.

Soren Thorup Sorensen, chief executive of Kirkbi, said: “We are committed to ensuring Legoland and the other activities in Merlin reach their full potential.

“We believe it is best pursued under private ownership in order to deliver fantastic experiences to visitors of all ages around the world.” Merlin chairman Sir John Sunderland welcomed the move.

He said: “After we rejected a number of their proposals, the Merlin independent directors believe that this offer represents an opportunity for Merlin shareholders to realise value for their investment in cash at an attractive valuation.”

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