Business Irish

Thursday 23 November 2017

Treacy family regains full control of leading SuperValu city store

Lough Erne resort which was formerly owned by businessman Jim Treacy
Lough Erne resort which was formerly owned by businessman Jim Treacy
SuperValu store in South Dublin
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Businessman Jim Treacy - who lost control of the Lough Erne golf resort five years ago - has regained ownership of one of the country's busiest SuperValu stores, the Irish Independent has learned.

Mr Treacy had been managing the Supervalu in Churchtown, south Dublin, on behalf of Musgrave, which had acquired it from a receiver.

But he has now inked an agreement with the retail group to take the store back under his full control.

"Musgrave can confirm that SuperValu Churchtown is back under the operating control of Jim Treacy," the Cork-based group said in a statement.

"As a family-owned business with a long-term view, we are committed to supporting our retail partners," it added.

"SuperValu Churchtown has always been a successful business and we wish Jim Treacy and the staff in Churchtown well into the future."

SuperValu store in South Dublin
SuperValu store in South Dublin

It's not clear whether Musgrave has provided any direct finance to Mr Treacy to reacquire the property.

However, a debenture was drafted last month between a Mugsrave unit and a company controlled by Mr Treacy. That saw the Musgrave unit take a charge over the Churchtown property.

Musgrave, which controls the SuperValu brand, acquired the Churchtown SuperValu out of receivership in 2011.

Mr Treacy had used the SuperValu store in Dublin to guarantee borrowings linked to the Lough Erne Resort in Co Fermanagh.

He had spent about a decade developing the £30m (€38m) resort, using about £10m of his own money.

In 2010, Bank of Scotland announced it was leaving the Irish market. It then called in about £21m in loans attached to the resort, a move criticised by Mr Treacy at the time.

He said the resort was profitable then and claimed Bank of Scotland was "immoral" for not taking a long-term view of the business.

A receiver was appointed to the resort by the bank. Bank of Scotland also put the SuperValu business in Churchtown in receivership because it had been used to guarantee the resort's loans. Musgrave paid €10.2m for the trading business of the SuperValu store in Dublin, according to a receiver's report, and also acquired the premises in which it's located, it's understood, making for a total outlay of over €12m.

Mr Treacy entered talks with Musgrave last year to reacquire the property. It's understood his daughter also now has a stake in the business. The Lough Erne resort was sold last year to US investors Vine Avenue Advisors for €8.4m.

Irish Independent

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