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Hornby take over Corgi in £7.5m deal

 Hornby chief executive Frank Martin

Hornby chief executive Frank Martin

The Thanet-based Hornby firm has taken over model car firm Corgi in a £7.5m deal.

Horby is famous for its model railways, Scalextric slot car racing cars, Airfix models and Humbrol paints.

It says it intends to grow the Corgi brand and says marketing, sales and development staff will be retained.

Corgi, which had sales of £6.5m last year, is one of the oldest manufacturers of collectible die-cast models of trucks, buses, cars and aeroplanes in the world.

Its model vehicles are now highly sought-after in the expanding collectibles market. Its main markets are the UK, the US and Northern Europe.

Hornby’s chief executive Frank Martin said: "It is a fantastic brand and has a superb reputation worldwide. We intend to build on the brand’s super heritage and invest to build its premier position in the market."

Corgi was established by the Mettoy Company in Northampton, which first started to produce pressed metal toys in the 1930s. The Corgi brand for die-cast models was born in 1956 and at its height, was selling millions of toys a year.

As part of the Corgi deal, Hornby is also acquiring Bassett-Lowke, an upmarket "O" gauge model railway brand.

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