Business Irish

Monday 11 December 2017

IBRC's UK executives to abandon ship ahead of wind-up

Ex-Anglo executives to manage troubled loans for other lenders

A workman removing signage from Anglo Irish Bank headquarters at St Stephen's Green in Dublin in 2011
A workman removing signage from Anglo Irish Bank headquarters at St Stephen's Green in Dublin in 2011
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Senior IBRC executives are preparing to abandon ship as the failed lender's wind-up looms closer.

The Irish Independent has learned that executives of Irish Bank Resolution Corporation's UK team are poised to launch a new venture that will consider managing troubled loans for other lenders.

The defection comes as IBRC prepares to complete legalities for the sale of its €7.3bn 'Rock' and 'Salt' loan portfolios tomorrow to US-based Lone Star and a consortium that includes Sankaty Advisors and Canyon Capital. That sale agreement was announced in February.

And in an additional twist, one of the senior UK-based executives, Fergal Feeney, has established a new company in Ireland – Earlsfort Capital Partners - with the former head of Anglo Irish Bank's New York office, Paul Brophy.

Mr Feeney, who joined Anglo Irish Bank in 1997, is the head of asset recovery for the UK at IBRC. He has joined forces with three other executives with a new British company called Logan Capital Advisors.

The other IBRC executives setting up Logan Capital are Jim Brydie, who's the head of the bank's UK operations; Maureen Harris, who was a lending director at IBRC predecessor Anglo Irish Bank; and Peter Ralph, who was also a director of lending in the UK at Anglo Irish Bank.

They've each taken a quarter share in Logan Capital.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Jim Brydie confirmed that the four executives were planning a new venture.

"We do hope to do something," he said. "We've been a team for the past five years. We do have a good reputation."

Mr Brydie joined Anglo Irish Bank in 2007 from Royal Bank of Scotland.

He declined to say precisely what areas the new business might focus on, but said troubled asset management would be one of the options it could look at.

"I think it's too early to say unfortunately," he added. "There's nothing in stone. We're still working for the special liquidators."

IBRC's special liquidators, Eamonn Richardson and Kieran Wallace of KPMG, had been busy offloading the bank's loan portfolio since last year, when the Government suddenly decided to liquidate the institution.

After completing the sale of the Rock and Salt loan portfolios tomorrow, IBRC has a three-month contract to provide a transition backup service. Once that expires, many IBRC executives including those in the UK, will be cut loose.

Mr Feeney and Mr Brophy are directors and sole shareholders in Dublin-based Earlsfort Capital Partners.

Mr Brophy, who joined Anglo in 1995, is listed as having an address in Darien, Connecticut. The company's business objective is the granting of credit, according to its incorporation documents. Mr Brophy, who describes his occupation as a financial services adviser, established a firm called LNH Advisors in Connecticut last November.

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