Theme Park, Amusement Park and Attractions Industry News

Brighton Pier Group PLC acquires Lightwater Valley Theme Park in Yorkshire, England

The Brighton Pier Group PLC, which owns and trades Brighton Palace Pier on England’s south coast, as well as nine premium bars and eight indoor mini golf sites, announces that it has today acquired the entire share capital of Lightwater Valley Attractions Limited (“Lightwater Valley”) for a consideration of up to £5 million payable in cash. The acquisition will be funded from a £2 million extension to the Group’s revolving credit facility and existing cash resources.

The total consideration is being satisfied by an initial payment of £4.0 million in cash on the completion date (adjusted for working capital and on a debt free cash free basis), deferred consideration of £0.5 million due at the end of October 2021 and contingent consideration of up to a further £0.5 million, subject to Lightwater Valley achieving certain trading targets over the current summer.

Lightwater Valley owns and operates the Lightwater Valley Theme Park in Ripon, England, a leading North Yorkshire attraction which is focused on family days out and is set in 175 acres of landscaped parkland. The Park offers a variety of attractions with rides, amusements, crazy golf, children’s outdoor and indoor play, entertainment shows, together with numerous food, drink and retail outlets. The Park also provides popular seasonal events including Hallowe’en (Frightwater Valley) and Christmas (Alice in Winterland).

As the restrictions imposed by the COVID pandemic on the UK Leisure Industry continue to be lifted, the Board are confident that Lightwater Valley’s trading will resume to normalised levels in the short term.

The Board believes that the extensive space at Lightwater Valley provides a long term growth opportunity for the Group to develop and expand the park. This acquisition executes on the Company’s stated strategy to create a growth group, operating across a wide variety of leisure and entertainment assets in the UK. It is the Group’s intention to position itself as a consolidator in this sector.

Commenting on the acquisition, Anne Ackord, Chief Executive Officer of the Brighton Pier Group PLC, said: “I am delighted to welcome all the team at Lightwater Valley to The Brighton Pier Group. I believe that, together, we can develop Lightwater Valley into the premier amusement destination across Yorkshire and the surrounding areas.

“This acquisition continues the Company’s development as a consolidator within the leisure industry, and we are excited to explore further growth opportunities as they arise.

“I believe our businesses are ideally suited to take advantage of the pent-up demand as the UK unlocks its restrictions. The booming ‘staycation’ market is going to significantly grow UK tourism over the coming months as international travel restrictions remain in place, this provides a great opportunity over the summer for all the Group’s operations.”

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