Merlin Entertainments announces agreement to open LEGOLAND Japan
Merlin today announces it will open its first LEGOLAND park in Japan, which is the second biggest theme park market in the world. The new park, to be located in the city of Nagoya, will cost c¥32 billion (c£185 million2) in total and adds to Merlin’s existing portfolio of six LEGOLAND parks in five countries.
Nick Varney, Merlin Entertainments Chief Executive Officer, commented:
“Today’s announcement is another major milestone in the development of the LEGOLAND brand.
We are delighted to be working closely with the City of Nagoya and with KIRKBI on the project, both of whom appreciate the potential of the brand in the second biggest theme park market in the world.
The park will make a significant contribution to the growth of the Merlin group from opening in the second quarter of 2017, as well as supporting our continued geographic diversification. Long term, we continue to believe that there is significant opportunity for the LEGOLAND brand, with the
potential for up to 20 parks across the world and we remain committed to our target of opening a new park every two to three years.”
Nagoya is ideally located in the centre of Japan and is approximately two hours from Tokyo and one hour from Osaka, with independent market research suggesting a potential catchment area in excess of 20 million people. The park will be located on a site close to the port, with excellent road and rail links. The initial development will focus on the theme park, with potential options available for further park expansion and the development of on-site, themed accommodation over future
LEGOLAND Japan will be of similar scale to the recently opened LEGOLAND parks in Malaysia and Florida and is expected to employ up to 1,000 staff in a variety of roles.