Tuesday 20 February 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 sale of the country's only oil refinery - at Whitegate in Cork - is understood to have been effectively sealed by US owner Phillips 66.

The refinery has been up for sale on and off by Texas-based Phillips 66 since 2013.

* Anglers are being asked to help the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) assess the true scale of the Irish angling industry, which is estimated to be worth €800m per year to the economy.

Angling attracts over 100,000 visitors to Ireland every year, but the ESRI believes greater knowledge of the factors which attract visitors here will allow for increased development of the industry in the years ahead.

* BT will not be forcibly broken up by the UK telecoms regulator but will form a "legally separate" entity to manage broadband access for rival firms.

In a ruling, UK telecoms regulator Ofcom said that the British incumbent telecom operator will keep ownership of its broadband network as long as it opens up further to rivals and invests more in upgrades.

The Irish Times

* AIB is set to pay back the State €1.76bn in order to redeem notes issued as part of its bailout in July 2011.

The payment is made up of the original €1.6bn to get back its contingent capital notes as well as €160m in interest. The bank is expected to post a profit of €623m in the first half of the year.

* Irish Water is set to splash out €370m over the next ten years to get rid of lead piping across the country with at least €78m being spent on treating water to put an end to lead contamination.

According to a report in The Irish Times, around 180,000 homes use lead piping with the utility fearing it may not meet EU safe-drinking standards.

* Shares in Patrick Coveney's Greencore fell on Tuesday after the company described its US performance as "lumpy".

However, Mr Coveney remained optimistic on the food firm's US business, saying it had become profitable since March.

Irish Examiner

* Communications regulator Comreg has signed a 20-year lease for the last remaining space at One Dockland Central in Dublin's IFSC.

Comreg will occupy the ground and second floors of the building, taking up a 30,200 sq ft space. The lease comes bundled with a tenant-only break option after 11 years.

* Irish food firm Greencore has tipped a "modest" impact from Brexit this year, not expecting any immediate impact from the drop in sterling.

However, the company warned that its debt load could raise in the long-term should the currency market remain as volatile as it is.

* Pre-tax profits at the Skeffington Arms Hotel in Galway City fell by 35pc to €519,435 last yaer.

The landmark hotel, situated in Eyre Square in the heart of the city, is currently enjoying one of its busiest weeks of the year with the Galway Races in full swing.

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