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Merlin share price: Entertainment company had strong year despite rollercoaster accident

Merlin Entertainment’s (LON:MERL) share price has had a strong 12 months despite the rollercoaster disaster last year, Numis has remarked.

The broker yesterday reiterated its ‘hold’ recommendation and target price of 400p on the blue-chip theme parks operator. Analyst Ivor Jones said in a note to clients: “Merlin’s share price has outperformed the market over the past year, despite the impact on profits and sentiment of the accident at Alton Towers in mid-2015. We believe this share price performance reflects the long-term investment attractions of the business in a turbulent market.” He added that Merlin’s global consumer exposure and growth potential had delivered material outperformance for investors in the past year and Numis saw no reason to chase the shares ahead of the company’s full-year results announcement on February 25.

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 and hit the company just before the peak summer trading season. 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 has gained 5.55 percent in the past year. As of 09:35 GMT today, the blue-chip group was trading 0.21 percent higher at 430.40p. Meanwhile, the FTSE 100 benchmark index had fallen 0.48 percent to 6,001.38 points.
As of 09:44 GMT, Thursday, 18 February, Merlin Entertainments share price is 431.35p.

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