Friday 14 December 2018

Businessman says Jedward deal has cost him €600,000

Gavin McLoughlin

Gavin McLoughlin

A businessman who accuses singing duo Jedward of costing him €600,000 on foot of an alleged breach of contract will have his case heard next week.

Patrick Joseph Noonan alleges he was to be reimbursed for costs relating to sourcing and developing Jedward merchandise.

Jedward deny the allegations and are contesting the proceedings.

Mr Noonan issued proceedings in the High Court for alleged breach of contract in July 2013, and the case is listed for trial on Tuesday for five to eight days.

The dispute concerns an alleged contractual arrangement between the parties about commercialising the Jedward brand.

It is alleged that Mr Noonan was asked to begin developing and sourcing Jedward merchandise, which was to be sold at a profit, on the basis that Jedward would promote the merchandise to their legion of fans.

He was allegedly to be reimbursed personally for the venture's development costs - including the cost of Jedward-branded merchandise and work involved in registering Jedward as a trademark with the Irish Patents Office.

Total alleged financial losses for Mr Noonan amount to more than €600,000, with €250,000 in relation to Jedward-branded merchandise.

Mr Noonan's solicitor, Ronan Hynes, a partner at Keating Connolly Sellors Solicitors, in Limerick, said: "Obviously, we do not comment on individual cases, particularly when matters are before the courts. We will comment at the appropriate time."

Jedward's management did not respond to a request for comment from the Irish Independent.

The most recently filed accounts (covering the year to the end of 2016) for the Irish-incorporated business "Planet Jedward Ltd" show that accumulated losses at the company have reached more than €70,000. Creditors' amounts falling due in one year increased around €30,000 to €263,257.

In 2012, the business had accumulated profits of almost €600,000. The identical twins (26) - whose real names are John and Edward Grimes - from Dublin, shot to fame in 2009 after progressing to the finals of televised music competition 'The X Factor'. They have represented Ireland twice in the Eurovision song contest and have also appeared in 'Celebrity Big Brother'.

The twins also performed at a public concert in Dublin to mark the visit of former US president Barack Obama to Ireland. Their contract with record label Universal Records was not renewed in 2013, but the pair insisted they had not been dropped.

"Jedward have not been dropped. There's a dual understanding that we've taken our relationship to its highest heights so we decided to go out on a high," a spokesman said.

Last year the duo made headlines after hitting out at Louis Walsh, their former manager.

Mayo man Walsh had previously described working with the act and putting them through on 'The X Factor' as the most embarrassing thing to happen to him in his career.

"I think we are the most financially beneficial act of his career in the last 10 years," Edward Grimes claimed.

John Grimes said: "I don't think he took us under his wing. I think we were already flying."

Irish Independent

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