Tuesday 24 April 2018

What it says in the papers: business pages

Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

Here are the main business stories from this morning's papers:

Irish Independent

* The National Asset Management Agency (Nama) made a profit of €571m for the first nine months of 2015 and had generated almost €9bn in cash over the course of the year, its latest quarterly accounts show.

The agency also repaid about €5.5bn in senior debt over the 12 months, bringing the total amount redeemed so far to €22.1bn, or 73pc.

The carrying value of Nama's loan portfolio at the end of September, net of cumulative impairment provision of €3.3bn, was €9.6bn.

* Irish startup Soundwave has been bought by music streaming giant Spotify for an undisclosed sum.

Soundwave, founded in 2012, makes an app that tracks people's listening habits across multiple services, and collates the data in order to suggest music based on the tastes of friends or people that users follow.

The app has been downloaded more than 1.5 million times across 190 countries since its launch.

* Last year was "exceptional" for the Irish Stock Exchange and saw it top the global rankings for listing bonds and investment funds.

More than 27,000 bond and 7,123 investment funds listed on the exchange over the course of last year.

The debt securities are spread across two bond markets - the Global Exchange Market and the Main Securities Market.

The Irish Times

* The Irish arm of Australian financial services group, Pepper, will become the first new mortgage lender in the Irish market since 2008.

The new loans will be offered initially through a group of roughly 20 brokers.

The Australian firm will launch three different mortgage products here for both home owners and buy-to-let loans.

* Music streaming giant, Spotify, has bought Irish music start-up Soundwave for an undisclosed sum.

Soundwave, which was established in 2012, is an app that develops musical recommendations for users based on their listening habits.

The move will see Soundwave integrated into Spotify's service and will bolster its 'Discovery' section.

* Facebook chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, said that traditional media had a more important role now than ever when speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Wednesday.

Ms Sandberg said that given the amount of information that's currently available, 'high-quality journalism, that holds companies, governments and individuals to account is really important'.

The COO also said that she was happy with the rate at which Facebook's users were consuming news media from the site.

Irish Examiner

* The Irish Brokers' Association has questioned the effect that Australian financial services firm, Pepper, will have on the Irish market.

Speaking on Wednesday, chairman of the IBA, Michael Dowling, said that while its introduction to the market is good news, it may not be sufficient to loosen AIB and Bank of Ireland's grip.

While Mr Dowling says that Pepper won't be competing when it comes to volume, it will be doing so on price.

* The director of the Insolvency Service Ireland, Lorcan O'Connor, says that he expects the number of people filing for bankruptcy to double after the changes made to the law last year.

Mr O'Connor said that he anticipates there will be a large increase this year, which compares significantly to 2007, where only one person had filed for bankruptcy.

The director also said that the Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) will be present at all repossession courts around the country.

* The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said that rent certainty measures, which were introduced by the Government, could dampen housing supply.

According to the IMF, the move could dissuade much-needed construction in the housing sector in Ireland.

In a new report released by the Fund it recommends that cost saving measures of building could help encourage the sector to grow.

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