Tuesday 17 October 2017

UK investors take stake in NAMA holding company

UK investors have agreed to buy part of a holding company used to keep Ireland's so-called bad bank, the National Asset Management Agency, from appearing on the country's balance sheet the agency said on Monday.

Created to purge Irish banks of €74bn of problem land and development loans, NAMA conducts much of its business via a special purpose vehicle, allowing the government to take its debt off the government's balance sheet for EU accounting purposes.

A company owned by the partners of UK-based investment firm Walbrook Capital have agreed to buy a 17pc stake in the vehicle, the National Asset Management Agency Investment Ltd (NAMAIL).

The NAMAIL shareholding had previously been held by state-owned insurer Irish Life, but the government's recent purchase of Irish Life risked then making NAMAIL majority state-controlled.

Two other private entities, New Ireland Assurance Co. plc and Percy Nominees Ltd, also each own 17pc of the vehicle. NAMA itself owns the other 49pc.

Investors in NAMAIL are not liable for losses the agency may make over its lifetime.

A spokesman for NAMA declined to comment on what returns the shareholders might expect to make on their investments.

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