Developer who owes NAMA almost €300m says he expects hundreds of others to follow his example
Developer Ray Grehan hopes to be back in the property business within a year after declaring bankruptcy in the UK. He expects hundreds of other developers to follow his example.
"I have cut the cord,'" was how Mr Grehan described his decision yesterday. His remaining assets will now come under the control of a trustee who will distribute them among his creditors.
NAMA is owed almost €300m by Mr Grehan, but it is understood his remaining assets will come nowhere near meeting even a portion of this amount. NAMA said last night it would work within the law to recover as much as possible.
Mr Grehan qualifies for bankruptcy in the UK by having an address there and doing significant business there over recent years. Speaking to the Irish Independent last night he said he expected hundreds of developers and builders to follow the same course. "Ultimately it is good for the economy, it allows people to get back into business, to get a second chance, at the moment the property sector in Ireland is totally static,'' he said.
It is understood Mr Grehan will try to win construction contracts or work for property funds in the period ahead. He is not allowed to be a company director in the UK during his bankruptcy.
In his official filings Mr Grehan is listed as currently trading at apartments in Bateman's Row, London, with his residence at Crinstown, Maynooth, Co Kildare. Mr Grehan will be discharged on December 30 this year, as his order was lodged just before the new year.
An apartment in New York, another one in London and a property in Canada are likely to come under the control of his bankruptcy trustee and the proceeds of their sale will be distributed to NAMA.
NAMA has already put most of Mr Grehan's UK and Irish assets into receivership. No action has been taken against Mr Grehan's family home, it is understood.
A freezing order has been taken out by NAMA stopping Mr Grehan selling any assets, but this order is now somewhat by-passed by Mr Grehan's latest action.
Mr Grehan signed a preliminary agreement with NAMA in 2010, but the two sides later failed to agree on a way forward. It is understood Mr Grehan was unhappy about the the appointment of ex-banker Harry Slowey to the business.