Business Irish

Thursday 21 September 2017

Developer McNamara hit by two further receiverships

Emmet Oliver Deputy Business Editor

Bernard McNamara's crumbling property empire is in danger of implosion as another two of his firms slip into receivership.

Varleigh and Breydon Developments have both been put into receivership by Ulster Bank, with PWC appointed to both firms as the receivers.

The companies are involved in property development, much of it in the Tallaght area, and public relations executive James Morrissey is a director of both companies.

Mr McNamara, who is involved in negotiations with NAMA, creditors and foreign banks has already seen one of his key companies, Michael McNamara and Co, one of the biggest building and civil engineering groups in Ireland, go into receivership.

Debts

Mr McNamara owns the company but has taken a step back from its activities in recent months. He is believed to have debts of €1.5bn and has been in intense talks with NAMA for months.

It is not known what personal guarantees the Clare-born developer has.

While a popular figure in the property game, Mr McNamara came under financial pressure after he invested in the Irish Glass Bottle site in Ringsend, Co Dublin.

Mr McNamara took a stake in Becbay, the company behind the venture, but ended up being sued by a group of private investors put together by Davy Stockbrokers.

NAMA moved a fortnight ago to appoint a receiver to Mr McNamara's flagship Radora Developments after several weeks of negotiations with the developer.

Radora owns the giant Elm Park prime office development in Dublin 4.

A sale of the Elm Park development will be one of the largest sell-offs in south Dublin for some time and could impact on prices for commercial property throughout the area.

Friends First and ACC were also mentioned at one point as likely to apply for a receiver to the Radora company.

The receiverships come as NAMA works its way through business plans submitted by the big property developers to figure out which parts of their operations may be viable and which should be shut down.

The agency has an 80-strong team -- including insolvency experts -- that has been working with the cash-strapped developers to work out how it can get them to repay the maximum amount.

The writing was on the wall for Michael McNamara Construction over recent weeks when NAMA rejected its business plan and went to court to have a receiver appointed.

Irish Independent

Also in Business