Business Irish

Thursday 24 August 2017

NAMA imposes no-fly zone on developers

Emmet Oliver Deputy Business Editor

NAMA, THE state loans agency, has ordered several key developers to immediately halt the use of helicopters for private purposes in its latest attempt to end what it describes as "lavish'' lifestyles by some borrowers.

The Irish Independent understands that several agreements between developers now mention helicopters being used to ferry executives around Ireland.

The agency has included the restriction in several memorandums of understanding, even though most helicopters are not funded by Irish lenders.

NAMA, which has put up to 57 companies and individuals into receivership/liquidation so far, told developers during meetings that only in exceptional circumstances could the use of a helicopter be accepted. This would be in cases where a company or a developer must travel long distances at short notice.

The agency is in final negotiations with a number of Dublin-based developers and if these negotiations are not successful they are also expected to face enforcement action.

The agency has seized a range of security underpinning loans and in many cases has asked the developers to post additional security, including racehorses and sculptures in one case.

Last week, NAMA chairman Frank Daly said: "A number of debtors appear to be trapped in the old mindset whereby it is they and not the lender who sets the terms on which business is done."

NAMA has given the green light to several developers, some of whom have been given five years to trade their way out of difficulties. Among those who have signed agreements are Treasury Holdings, O'Flynn Construction, Joe O'Reilly and the Ballymore Group.

Some of these haven't been formally signed yet, but are close to that point.

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