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Alton Towers owner takes control of Cadbury World

The group that owns Alton Towers has agreed to a 50-year deal to take over control of the popular Birmingham-based attraction Cadbury World.

Merlin Entertainments, which is currently Europe’s biggest theme park company, has signed a deal to purchase the operations and brand from the historic chocolate brand’s owner, Mondelez International.

It brings Cadbury World under the umbrella of the popular tourism company, which also own the likes of Legoland, Sealife and Madame Tussauds reports Business Live.

Cadbury World, which is visited by around 600,000 people a year, was built by the world-famous chocolate company at its headquarters in Bourneville back in 1990 at a cost of around £6million.

In 2010, the site was acquired as part of Kraft’s controversial takeover of Cadbury before the US behemoth was forced to spin-off its European snacking arm as Mondelez.

Cadbury World forms part of the chocolate company’s factory site in Bournville

Louise Stigant, UK managing director at Mondelez International, said by working with Merlin Entertainments, the company would be able to bring the history and heritage of the Cadbury brand and “the joy of chocolate” to more people.

“Cadbury World is a truly unique experience and since it first opened its doors in 1990, has been enjoyed by millions of families from across the UK and overseas,” she said.

“We want to build on the strong foundations we’ve laid so that people can continue to enjoy Cadbury World for generations to come. As we approach Cadbury’s 200th anniversary, I’m really excited by this partnership.”

Merlin’s chief development officer Mark Fisher said: “As one of the world leaders in location-based entertainment we are delighted that Cadbury World is joining the already strong global network of Merlin attractions.

“We have long admired Cadbury as the nation’s favourite chocolate brand and have already successfully worked together across a range of experiential activities and retail spaces in our UK theme parks.

“We are now excited to continue the relationship and bring to life the sights, smells and fun experiences that chocolate lovers have come to know and love, but just with the additional helping of some Merlin magic.”

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