Pinewood Shepperton, film studios used for the James Bond and Harry Potter movies has been sold to the largest shareholder and property tycoon John Whittaker. John Whittaker, chairman of Peel Group has purchased the studios at the value of £96 million.
The 75-year-old studio, which is also home to the Batman and the Pirates of the Caribbean films, recommended a 200 pence per share cash offer. The new owner is planning an ambitious expansion plan by £20 million build new facilities worthy of Hollywood. Property and infrastructure firm Peel Holdings increased its offer by around £8 million in the face of rival takeover interest from former Harrods owner Mohamed al Fayed.
Mr Whittaker said: Peel believes that the acquisition represents an attractive proposition for the shareholders of Pinewood. Peel is a long-term investor in Pinewood and the wider media sector through its MediaCityUK investment and looks forward to supporting the Pinewood management in growing its operational business and developing its unique Project Pinewood proposal. Peel represents a long-term strategic partner for Pinewood in continuing to grow and develop the business.