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Revenue up but profit down as Merlin reports half year results
POSTED 02 Aug 2018 . BY Tom Anstey
With many exciting new initiatives and launches to come in the future, we remain confident in our long term prospects
– Nick Varney
The first half of the year has been a mixed bag for Merlin, with the operator reporting revenue increases of £24m (US$31.4m, €27m) for the first half of the year, but a decline in operating profits, which were down £10m (US$13m, €11.3m).

For the 26 weeks ended 30 June, revenue was £709m (US$927m, €798m), up from £685m (US$895.7m, €771m) for the same period in 2017, representing a 3.5 per cent rise.

Operating profits took a significant hit, down to £63m (US$82.4m, €71m) – a 14.3 per cent decline. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) also dropped slightly, down 1.3 per cent to £143m (US$187m, €161m), compared to £144m (US$188.3m, €162m) for the period last year.

According to Merlin, the decline in profit was due primarily to adverse foreign exchange movements and a higher depreciation charge due to new business development.

"In the existing estate we have been pleased with trading in the resort theme parks operating group," said Merlin CEO Nick Varney.

"We've had strong customer reception to our product investments and we continue to see the anticipated recovery at Alton Towers. The business has also undoubtedly benefited from the recent warm weather in Northern Europe which due to the natural balance of our portfolio has conversely had an adverse impact on our indoor Midway attractions.

"Having so far traded in line with expectations we are now entering our peak season, where we generate the majority of our annual profit. With many exciting new initiatives and launches to come in the future, we remain confident in our long term prospects."

Merlin has a number of developments currently in progress at its visitor attractions worldwide, including new Midway attractions including Justice League at Madame Tussauds Orlando and Sydney; the Lego City: Deep City Adventure at Legoland California; the Wickerman wooden coaster at Alton Towers; and the Peppa Pig additions at both Heide Park and Gardaland.

Merlin is also continuing its initiative to turn its theme parks into destination resorts, with a total of 644 new rooms opening in 2018. These include the 252-bedroom hotel at Legoland Japan, the 250-bedroom Legoland California Castle Hotel, and the 142 bedroom Pirate Island Hotel at Legoland Deutschland.

Further attractions opening this year for the operator include Sea Life at Legoland Japan, the Legoland Discovery Centre and Bear Grylls Adventure in Birmingham, Peppa Pig World of Play in Shanghai and Little Big City in Beijing. Legoland New York is also making progress, and is expected to open in 2020.
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NEWS
Revenue up but profit down as Merlin reports half year results
POSTED 02 Aug 2018 . BY Tom Anstey
With many exciting new initiatives and launches to come in the future, we remain confident in our long term prospects
– Nick Varney
The first half of the year has been a mixed bag for Merlin, with the operator reporting revenue increases of £24m (US$31.4m, €27m) for the first half of the year, but a decline in operating profits, which were down £10m (US$13m, €11.3m).

For the 26 weeks ended 30 June, revenue was £709m (US$927m, €798m), up from £685m (US$895.7m, €771m) for the same period in 2017, representing a 3.5 per cent rise.

Operating profits took a significant hit, down to £63m (US$82.4m, €71m) – a 14.3 per cent decline. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) also dropped slightly, down 1.3 per cent to £143m (US$187m, €161m), compared to £144m (US$188.3m, €162m) for the period last year.

According to Merlin, the decline in profit was due primarily to adverse foreign exchange movements and a higher depreciation charge due to new business development.

"In the existing estate we have been pleased with trading in the resort theme parks operating group," said Merlin CEO Nick Varney.

"We've had strong customer reception to our product investments and we continue to see the anticipated recovery at Alton Towers. The business has also undoubtedly benefited from the recent warm weather in Northern Europe which due to the natural balance of our portfolio has conversely had an adverse impact on our indoor Midway attractions.

"Having so far traded in line with expectations we are now entering our peak season, where we generate the majority of our annual profit. With many exciting new initiatives and launches to come in the future, we remain confident in our long term prospects."

Merlin has a number of developments currently in progress at its visitor attractions worldwide, including new Midway attractions including Justice League at Madame Tussauds Orlando and Sydney; the Lego City: Deep City Adventure at Legoland California; the Wickerman wooden coaster at Alton Towers; and the Peppa Pig additions at both Heide Park and Gardaland.

Merlin is also continuing its initiative to turn its theme parks into destination resorts, with a total of 644 new rooms opening in 2018. These include the 252-bedroom hotel at Legoland Japan, the 250-bedroom Legoland California Castle Hotel, and the 142 bedroom Pirate Island Hotel at Legoland Deutschland.

Further attractions opening this year for the operator include Sea Life at Legoland Japan, the Legoland Discovery Centre and Bear Grylls Adventure in Birmingham, Peppa Pig World of Play in Shanghai and Little Big City in Beijing. Legoland New York is also making progress, and is expected to open in 2020.
RELATED STORIES
Legoland Florida announces Lego Movie expansion plans


Merlin has announced the largest expansion for Legoland Florida since it opened in 2011.
Merlin profits increase despite terror attacks affecting London


Terrorist attacks in the British capital affected its midway division, but Merlin Entertainments enjoyed a solid 2017, with visitation and earnings both rising year-on- year.
Work begins on Merlin's £20m Bear Grylls attraction


Construction is underway for Birmingham’s Bear Grylls Adventure – with Merlin Entertainments already planning a global rollout after the UK launch.
MORE NEWS
British artists create Philadelphia warehouse Sea Monster installation
20 inflatable tentacles have appeared extending out from a disused warehouse in Philadelphia, giving the appearance that sea monsters have attacked the building.
American Airlines CR Smith Museum reopens
The newly-renovated American Airlines CR Smith Museum in Fort Worth, Texas, has opened its doors following a redesign of the visitor attraction's permanent exhibitions.
Canadian art gallery and library proposal seeks state permission for approval
The town of Smithers, BC, Canada might be about to get an art gallery-cum-library if planning is approved by the state council.
Kazakhstan’s first contemporary culture centre to open in 2020
Kazakhstan’s first private cultural institution will “participate in the development of contemporary culture in Kazakhstan and Central Asia” when it opens in 2020 in the city of Almaty, according to its project director, Jama Nurkalieva.
+ More news   
LATEST JOBS
Head of RHS Garden Bridgewater
Royal Horticultural Society
Salary: circa £65,000 depending on experience
Job location: Greater Manchester, UK
Group Sales Assistant
Legoland Discovery Centre
Salary: Competitive
Job location: Somerville, Massachusetts, USA
Operations Lead
Sea Life
Salary: Competitive
Job location: Bloomington, Minnesota, USA
Facilities Lead Technician
Legoland Discovery Centre
Salary: Competitive
Job location: Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Finance Director
Legoland
Salary: Competitive
Job location: New York, NY, USA
Duty Manager
Legoland Discovery Centre
Salary: Competitive
Job location: Concord, Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
+ More jobs  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2018

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