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Thursday 23 March 2017

The €3bn NAMA sell-off

Properties include 80 hotels and 10,000 apartments

Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

NEARLY €3bn in property could hit the market this year as NAMA ramps up the sale of its assets.

To date, NAMA has approved the sale of some €2.7bn worth of property. While much of that portfolio has not yet hit the market, the agency has indicated it will be increasing its sale rate.

NAMA can force an asset to be sold through one of two ways. Either the agency can appoint a receiver, as it did on Thursday with financier Derek Quinlan, or it can put pressure on the developer to sell a particular property.

The government's "bad bank" will rarely show its hand in any sale. Instead the public will just see a certain property coming on to the market.

NAMA is unlikely to announce that it is selling a specific asset. It will not reveal the full extent of its portfolio, but apart from the 80 or so hotels under the agency's management, it is also thought to hold more than 10,000 apartments across the State.

Control

Last month, the agency moved against developer Paddy Kelly, taking control of a number of hotels including the Clarion Hotels at the IFSC and Dublin Airport.

Bernard McNamara's fall was perhaps one of the highest profile collapses so far during the bust. When his company, Cicol Ltd was put into receivership by NAMA in February, he lost control of the Montrose Hotel and the Elm Park apartment and office complex near UCD in south Dublin.

Liam Carroll built more apartments than anyone else during the boom, and paid the price when the bottom fell out of the property market.

Much of Mr Quinlan's investments were overseas, but he also had a substantial portfolio in Ireland, including houses on Dublin's Shrewsbury and Ailesbury roads and an apartment in the five-star Merrion Hotel.

All are likely to be sold after NAMA called in a receiver this week. The agency is already believed to have forced him to put the Citigroup Headquarters in London up for sale with an asking price in excess of €1bn.

Irish Independent

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