Sunday 26 February 2017

Key McNamara figures resign from crumbling empire

Emmet Oliver Deputy Business Editor

Bernard McNamara: has complex company structures
Bernard McNamara: has complex company structures

Several key lieutenants of property developer Bernard McNamara have resigned from a large number of his companies as questions linger over the future of his property empire.

Michael Flannery, a close associate of McNamara, and accountant Catherine Foy have resigned from a large number of McNamara firms, but claim that their resignations have not been passed to the Companies Office by the firms they have left.

As a result they've both filed B69 forms emphasising they are no longer officers of the companies. Normally the companies the directors are resigning from do all the paperwork, and the person resigning does not fill out a B69 form.

Some of the companies have gone into receivership, but others appear not to be in financial trouble, although some may have inter-company loans from some of the firms gone into receivership.

Ms Foy is a long-standing and experienced accountant who has worked alongside Mr McNamara for several years, while Mr Flannery has worked for several years as financial controller of Michael McNamara and Co, the largest company in Mr McNamara's empire.

Problems

Other companies Ms Foy or Mr Flannery are seeking to resign from include Cabland Ltd, Glasbay Ltd, Kilbane Estates Ltd, Kilmore Developments Ltd, Laytar Ltd, Lesdgebrook Ltd, Tandrelle Ltd, Versonwood Limited and Michael McNamara & Co itself.

In some cases, both are seeking to resign as directors of the same firm. Bernard McNamara has one of the most complex company structures in the development scene, rivalled only by Liam Carroll.

One of the major problems emerging is the sheer scale of inter-company loans between different McNamara companies. This can mean that trouble for one company can create problems in the balance sheet of another.

If one company can't make good on a loan to another company, the company that lent the money has to take an impairment charge, which can push the firm into the red.

Six companies belonging to Mr McNamara have been put into receivership in recent weeks by either NAMA or Ulster Bank.

It is also understood that NAMA has asked Mr McNamara for information about any asset transfers that have taken place to either his spouse or third parties.

It is also understood Mr McNamara owns a large property portfolio outside Ireland and his wife bought a Manhattan apartment in recent years. There are also properties registered in Spain.

Irish Independent

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