Kirkland & Ellis advised Blackstone on the recommended cash offer for Merlin Entertainments plc, valuing Merlin at £4.77 billion. Blackstone was part of a consortium of long-term investors comprising KIRKBI Invest A/S ("KIRKBI"), a wholly owned subsidiary of KIRKBI A/S, the ultimate owner of the LEGO® brand, and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board ("CPPIB").
A global team from Kirkland & Ellis advised on all aspects of the transaction including public M&A, corporate, financing, capital markets, compliance, employment, real estate and tax drawn from our London, New York, Hong Kong, Washington, Chicago and Shanghai offices.
The Kirkland team was led by London transactional partners David Holdsworth, David Higgins and Dipak Bhundia; debt finance partners Leon Daoud, Christopher Shield and Stephen Lucas; high yield partner Matthew Merkle and antitrust partner Mike Robert-Smith.
Merlin is a global leader in location-based, family entertainment. As Europe's number one and the second largest visitors attraction business globally, Merlin now operates over 130 attractions, 19 hotels and seven holiday villages in 25 countries and across four continents. Merlin's purpose is to deliver memorable experiences to its 67 million guests around the world, through its iconic brands and multiple attraction formats, and the commitment and passion of its c.28,000 employees (peak season).