Tuesday 20 August 2019

Bill McCabe-backed GC Aesthetics breached loan covenants

'Irish revenue dropped from $164,000 in 2014 to $13,000 in 2015' File photo: PA
'Irish revenue dropped from $164,000 in 2014 to $13,000 in 2015' File photo: PA
Gavin McLoughlin

Gavin McLoughlin

GC Aesthetics, the Sandyford-based breast implant manufacturer backed by e-learning pioneer Bill McCabe, breached loan covenants last year.

Newly filed accounts show the company, which aborted a US IPO last year, lost $60m in 2015. It reached an agreement with creditors Orbimed Advisors to amend the covenants and strike out the breaches.

"At year end, the group was in breach of certain of its loan covenants... since the year end loan covenants were amended by agreement and past breaches of the relevant covenants were waived," the accounts, which cover the year to December 31, 2015, state. The breaches arose because company had less than €2m of liquidity as defined by the loan agreements at certain times during the year, and had certain payments that were overdue for more than 90 days, according to the accounts.

The company's turnover dropped 7.8pc year-on-year in the period - to $48.69m - fuelled by currency movements, according to GC. It said it foresaw revenue growth in 2016 and 2017, having secured licences to market products in Brazil, Korea and China this year.

Irish revenue dropped from $164,000 in 2014 to $13,000 in 2015.

"Management plans to capitalise on the favourable trends in the aesthetics market and benefit from the underlying growth in women's disposable income, particularly in emerging geographies," the accounts state.

GC completed a $20m fundraising in July, saying the money would enable it to accelerate growth.

McCabe's Oyster Capital participated, along with other existing investors Montreux Equity Partners and Tony Barry's Barry's Tea Holdings.

That came after the company pulled a planned listing on the Nasdaq, citing turbulent market conditions.

"In the current market situation, we believe it is in our best interests to continue to operate as a private company, capitalising on our strong market presence and the platform for growth that we have built. We are pursuing other alternatives of private financing to finance our growth strategy in the short term," GC chief executive Ayse Kocak told the Sunday Independent at the time.

"With respect to future plans regarding an IPO, we'll continue to evaluate opportunities to access the public markets in the future. Becoming a public company is still our ambition and it will happen when the time is right".

Belfast-born McCabe is one of Ireland's most successful entrepreneurs. He floated e-learning company CBT on the Nasdaq and his Oyster group has taken stakes in companies including John Mullins' renewable energy business Amarenco.

Sunday Indo Business

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