Merlin have released their preliminary results for 2014, showing another year of growth.
The Group was hit hard by unfavourable exchange rates but their six point strategy for growth continued to deliver.
Merlin's policy to invest in new rides, shows or features at every Merlin attraction in the year at a cost of £107 million (2013: £95 million) attracted 62.8 million visitors (4.9% increase) resulting in a 7.1% like-for-like revenue growth to £1.2bn and a 12.6% CAGR on EBITDA (2010-2014).
The rollout of Merlin’s Midway attractions continues apace with six new attractions opened across North American and Asia in 2014 and a further seven planned for 2015 and 2016.
Merlin has also been looking to secure IP with owners including the BBC, DreamWorks Animation, Rovio and Lucasfilm (Disney).
Commenting on the results, Nick Varney, Merlin Entertainments Chief Executive Officer, said, “2014 has been another good year for Merlin, wowing over 60 million visitors in 23 countries worldwide while growing revenues by 9.6% and underlying EBITDA by 11.0% on a constant currency basis. The stand out performance came from the LEGOLAND Parks Operating Group with like for like revenue growth at over 13%. However, the year hasn't been without its challenges and the strong overall Group result is a function of the diversified portfolio which our strategy has successfully created.
“In what has been a busy first full year as a public company, we have delivered on the near-term strategic targets set out at the time of the IPO, and our trading has met, or exceeded, expectations. In addition we have established a strong pipeline of potential new development projects and established important brand relationships across the business. Only in Merlin will you find a line up encompassing Emmet, Shrek, Horrible Histories, CBeebies and Darth Vader. With this in mind, we look forward to 2015 and beyond with confidence.”
Images: Corporate Snapshot