Proactive Investors - Run By Investors For Investors
Market: LSE
52-week High/Low: 14.75p / 0.86p
Sector: Leisure
Market Cap: 1.55M
Challenger Acquisitions Limited

Challenger Acquisitions Limited

Challenger Acquisitions Limited has been formed to undertake acquisitions of target companies in the entertainment and leisure sectors with a particular focus on the attractions sector. The Company is engaged in engineering and delivering giant observation wheels. Its segments include Engineering, Investments and Corporate Center. The Engineering segment engineers and project manages global observation wheel around the globe. The Investments segment holds and administers all participations it has in global observation wheels. The Corporate Center segment administers and manages the Company and identifies target companies or businesses for possible acquisitions in the Giant Observation Wheel industry. The Company is a holding company of Starneth Group. The Company, through Starneth Group, owns and operates a business specializing in the design and engineering of giant observation wheels and structures. Its clients are property and entertainment developers, and municipalities.

Challenger Acquisitions Limited

Interactive graph

col 3
col 4
col 5
col 6

Big picture - Why invest in Challenger Acquisitions Limited

Challenger Acquisitions Limited Snapshot


With the capabilities that Challenger's listing on the London Stock Exchange provides, it is the Company’s aim to become the leader, not only in the design and construction of giant observation wheels and structures, but also in the provision of financing for projects, and the ownership of giant observation wheels globally.   

Thanks to the engineering and consultancy services offered through its subsidiary Starneth, developers from around the world already recognise the brand as the go-to turnkey supplier of services for giant observation wheel projects.  With its reputation and past track record of delivery, and in tandem with its project selection criteria, the team has developed a pipeline of approximately 25 potential target developments around the world which the team believes gives Challenger the correct formula to be successful. 

Going forward Challenger’s main objectives are:

to advance the development of its recognisable brand in the attractions sector;

to assess the pipeline of potential giant observation wheel projects and secure contracts that would contribute positively to the Group’s growth and revenues; and

to build equity stakes in select projects globally that management believe will provide long term returns for its Shareholders.

The Market

Although the concept of Ferris wheels has been well known for more than a century, the giant observation wheel industry is only approximately 15 years old, beginning with the 135 metre high London Eye, the world’s first iconic-style giant observation wheel.  This specialty sector is different from the traditional Ferris wheels, primarily due to the use of mechanically driven capsules deployed in giant observation wheels, such as the London Eye (2000), Singapore Flyer (2008), and Las Vegas High Roller (2014), as well as the height of the wheel and the size of the capsules.  For example the London Eye has 32 capsules that hold up to 25 people in each capsule, whereas a traditional Ferris wheel capsule may hold only up to 8 customers.

Work on the Dubai-I and the New York Wheel remain in progress with both projects scheduled to be operational in 2018.  Historically, there has been, on average, completion of an iconic-type wheel project approximately every 2.5 years, subject to the disruption caused by the financial crisis in 2008/2009.

New York Wheel
Challenger has a $4million investment in New York Wheel Investor LLC, a company formed to fund the equity component for the New York Wheel Project. It is expected to be operational in Q3 2017 and targeted to become one of New York City’s great landmark attractions, alongside the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. Located on eight acres on the northeastern side of Staten Island the 630-foot attraction will be one of the tallest observation wheels in the world.  More than three million tourists already ride the free Staten Island Ferry every year to get a closer view of the Statue of Liberty, who will be natural clients for the project.

Key facts:

  • The 630 foot high structure, with 36 capsules revolving constantly, each carrying 40 passengers, will offer views of New York Harbour, the Statue of Liberty and Lower Manhattan during the Wheel’s 38-minute rotation
  • Maximum capacity of 1,440 people per ride, approximately 30,000 visitors per day and 10.5 million visitors per year
  • The multi-purpose destination, features approximately 450,000 square feet of enclosed space and eight acres of outdoor space and will include retail, exhibition, parking and attractions enclosed under an expansive green roof space that provides both a visual highlight of the waterfront, and important community and tourist open spaces
  • A secondary attraction space will emphasise the history and visual beauty of New York and include a "5 borough" casual dining and bar, rooftop beer garden, high-tech shopping kiosks, and a 950+ covered parking garage
  • It will be powered by clean energy and its “green” design is expected to achieve Silver/Gold LEED certification.


Challenger Acquisitions has a five year Cooperation Agreement with the Starneth Group which specialises in the design and engineering of giant observation wheels worldwide. Its founder and CEO Chiel Smits was the project manager responsible for the deisgn and construction of the wheel and drive system of the London Eye for Hollandia B.V. With the team’s expertise in the sector, a wide range of services are offered to developers, ranging from initial conceptual ideas and design to the construction, engineering, fabrication, erection and testing phases of development.

Challenger, Chief Executive Officer

CEO of Challenger Acquisitions
Seasoned public company executive in CEO, CFO and COO roles
Built 3 public companies 0 to > $100 M revenue
Former public company auditor with PWC



Challenger, Non-Executive Director

Chief Executive Officer of the New York Wheel since 2015; Chief Executive Officer of the Managing Member since 2012
Former Chairman and CEO of Deutsche Asset Management
Former Chairman and CEO of Bear Stearns Asset Management
Former Chairman and CEO of AFI (USA) A long-time executive and member of the Management Committee of Bankers Trust Company


Challenger, Non-Executive Director

Non-executive Director of Challenger Acquisitions
More than 20 years executive experience
Telecom, IT and cloud computing professional
Former CEO Comendo (Denmark), CEO Batelco (Bahrain), COO Sunrise (Switzerland), CEO TDC Residential (Denmark)
Revenue responsibility up to $1.5 billion and 5200 FTE





Lottie Brocklehurst
St Brides Partners
3 St Michael’s Alley
London EC3V 9DS
Call us: +44 207 236 1177
[email protected]


60 New Broad Street
Tel: +44207 220 0500


Markus Kameisis
Gutenbergstrasse 10, Zurich
Switzerland, CH-8002
Tel: +41 (0) 79 726 9388


Crowe Clark Whitehill LLP
St Bride’s House
10 Salisbury Square
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7842 7100


McCarthy Denning Limited
25 Southampton Buildings
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7769 6741


Collas Crill
Glategny Court
Glategny Esplanade
St Peter Port
Tel: +44 (0) 1481 723 191


HSBC Bank plc
8 Canada Square
E14 5HQ


Neville Registrars Limited
Neville House
18 Laurel Lane
B63 3DA
Tel: +44 (0) 121 585 1131


55 Mount Row
St Peter Port

Challenger Acquisitions Limited Timeline

Columns Including CHAL


Market Reports Including CHAL

Video RSS



© Proactive Investors 2017

Proactive Investor UK Limited, trading as “Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom”, is Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Registered in England with Company Registration number 05639690. Group VAT registration number 872070825 FCA Registration number 559082. You can contact us here.

Market Indices, Commodities and Regulatory News Headlines copyright © Morningstar. Data delayed 15 minutes unless otherwise indicated. Terms of use