Merlin share price climbs on SFO appointment
Shares in Merlin Entertainments (LON:MERL) opened higher this morning after the blue-chip theme parks operator named Anne-Francoise Nesmes as its new chief financial officer as of August 1.
Nesmes joins from FTSE 250-listed veterinary medical supplier Dechra Pharmaceuticals (LON:DECP), where she had been CFO since 2013. Previously, she had worked in a number of senior finance roles at drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (LON:GSK). Nesmes will replace Andrew Carr, who last month announced his intention to retire after 16 years in the role. Carr will remain in place until Nesmes steps in and will stay with the company for a period following her start to ensure a smooth transition.
Merlin’s chairman, Sir John Sunderland, said in a regulatory statement today: “We look forward to welcoming Anne-Françoise to the Board later in the year. Her extensive finance and international experience will enable her to make a significant contribution to our business as we continue to grow. On behalf of the Board I would like to again thank Andrew for his dedication to Merlin during the past 16 years and building it into the successful company it is today. We wish him all the best in the future.”
Merlin is trying to boost visitor numbers to its Alton Towers theme park in the UK after an accident last year left four teenagers seriously injured. The operator of the Sea Life centres and Legoland theme parks in Europe, North America and Asia has since put in place improved safety-measures at all its roller-coasters.
Merlin’s share price rose at the opening bell this morning. The stock was trading 1.05 percent higher at 406.00p as of 08:03 GMT. The FTSE 100 benchmark index meanwhile stood 0.95 percent up at 5,879.61 points.
As of 08:31 GMT, Tuesday, 16 February, Merlin Entertainments share price is 403.75p.