Ashurst, CC and Simpson Thacher land roles on Merlin IPO

Ashurst, Clifford Chance, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett have won advisory roles on an IPO by Merlin Entrainments, owner of attractions that include Legoland and Madame Tussauds.

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Ashurst advised Merlin on the IPO, which is expected to raise £200m from a 20 per cent share issue aimed at helping to reduce its £1.3bn debt.

Corporate partners Mark Sperotto, Jonathan Parry and Nicholas Holmes are leading the team that also includes senior associates Dominic Ross, Sian Williams and James Fletcher.

Ashurst has a longstanding relationship with the equity partners at Merlin, having worked with it on numerous deals including Merlin’s development of a theme park in Florida (1 February 2010).

Freshfields partner Chris Mort is leading the team that is advising the banks, Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Morgan Stanley and Citi.

Danish investment company Kirkbi and private equity houses CVC and Blackstone all have a stakeholding in the company.

Kirkbi is being advised by Clifford Chance M&A partner Steven Fox while Blackstone and CVC have turned to Simpson Thacher M&A partner Adam Signy.

Ashurst has a longstanding relationship with the equity partners at Merlin, having worked with it on numerous deals including Merlin’s development of a theme park in Florida (1 February 2010).