Tuesday 21 November 2017

Anglo US race thrown wide open with Reubens' interest

Loan book

Emmet Oliver, Deputy Business Editor

The Reuben Brothers, who together are the fifth richest people in the UK, have entered the race for Anglo's €10bn US loan book, the Irish Independent has learned.

It is understood that David and Simon Reuben, who tried to buy Jurys Doyle in Ireland in 2005, are teaming up with US billionaire Nelson Peltz -- the former owner of US soft-drink maker Snapple -- who heads up Trian Capital, a debt fund.

The reclusive Reubens, who own a large swathe of central London, are reported to be worth £5.5bn (€6bn), with a string of investments in tele-communications and metals.

The decision by them to express a firm interest in the Anglo assets will come as a major boost for the bank and the State who are hoping the sales process will be as competitive as possible.

The bidding is also expected to involve what are described as the "usual suspects" for US asset sales, like KKR (Kohlberg, Kravis & Roberts) and Blackstone, both giant private equity houses.

The Irish Independent understands that other groups are also interested in joining the Reuben-led group, but the names have yet to emerge.

It is also believed that Anglo is prepared to break the portfolio up into different lots to facilitate buyers. The mix of quality in the loan book is significant, with highly attractive assets and also non-performing assets.

The loan book is heavily weighted towards hotels, office blocks and retail. A large number of the assets revolve around loans given to Irish borrowers by Anglo Irish Private Bank.

The decision to sell the loan book was first disclosed in the 'Wall Street Journal'.

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