Sunday 18 March 2018

Anglo stakes claim on second Chicago site over unpaid loan

Emmet Oliver


Amount Anglo says it is owed by developers of the Chicago site that houses retailer Barneys

ANGLO Irish Bank is seeking to repossess another prominent development in Chicago, just a week after it sought to take control of the so-called 'Chicago spire' site.

The bank, nationalised since January 2009, is no longer allowed to lend into the US and is concentrating instead on calling in outstanding debts, particularly in New York and Chicago.

The retail chain Barneys of New York is the tenant at the site at the corner of Rush and Oak Street in Chicago, a prominent retail area. The bank wants to take over the property after claiming that a loan worth $93m (€67m) is outstanding from two local developers.

The foreclosure suit puts more pressure on the "sinking retail property values in Chicago", showing that even premier locations aren't immune, said the local business paper 'Crain's' this week.

One of the developers involved is also reported to be battling an $18.7m legal action at the former Cedar Hotel property, which is nearby the Barneys outlet.

"Clearly the bank is on a programme to liquidate assets as quickly as it can," US attorney Anthony Licata of Chicago-based Shefsky & Froelich told 'Crain's'.

Anglo has already moved to take over a site for the giant Chicago spire, claiming that companies linked to Irish developer Garrett Kelleher have loans that are now due.

Anglo is only allowed to lend to existing clients who are finishing off projects. This rule was imposed on the bank as part of the conditions of getting cash from the Government.

All of Anglo's existing non-NAMA loans will ultimately go into a new asset recovery bank, under proposals announced a few months ago.

These loans will eventually be paid off and the bank wound down. The loans that are not repaid will either be written off or the bank will take over the property the money was lent on.

Irish Independent

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