Wednesday 17 July 2019

Nama sales reach €7.8bn in 2014 as Irish assets hit the market

Agency said in its review that it is on course to deliver 3,500 more new homes by the end of next year
Agency said in its review that it is on course to deliver 3,500 more new homes by the end of next year
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Nama's €7.8bn of sales last year accounts for more than 40pc of all disposals since the agency was set up in 2009, according to new figures highlighting the accelerating pace of activity.

The National Asset Management Agency raised €8.6bn in cash during the year from assets sales, rents and interest, the agency said in it first end of year figures since a wide-ranging review of Nama for Minister for Finance Michael Noonan.

A decision was taken last July to speed up the disposal of Nama assets in order to repay 80pc of its original €30.2bn of senior debt by the end of next year, following the review.

Sales in 2014 included the high profile disposal of Nama's entire Northern Ireland portfolio in a single sale to Cerberus for about €1.5bn - or 28 cents in the euro - and the controversial sale to Blackstone Group sale of €1.8bn of loans linked to the O'Flynn Group.

Nama reduced its senior debt by €9.1bn during the year, by redeeming so-called Nama bonds, it said in a year end statement.

AIB was in line for €6bn of that, based on its 70pc share of the IOUs originally issued by Nama to pay for loans transferred out of the banks.

At the end of 2014 a total of 55pc of Nama's €30bn of senior debt had been repaid.

The numbers are "reassuring" for taxpayers, according to Phillip O'Sullivan, an economist with Investec.

Taxpayers would be on the hook for any of the Nama senior debt not repaid by 2020.

"Nama was criticised for dragging its heels selling Irish assets, but these numbers show it was right to sell in the US and UK first," Mr O'Sullivan said. Nama said 1,000 jobs were saved last year as a result of Examinerships supported by the agency. That includes 700 jobs at the Elverys Sports retail chain.

The agency said 1,000 homes financed by Nama were built in and around Dublin in 2014, and added that it is on course to deliver 3,500 more new homes by the end of 2016.

Nama said it transferred 1,000 homes to local authorities and agencies for social housing, around half in Dublin. The agency has offered 5,700 homes for social housing.

Irish Independent

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