| 7.4°C Dublin

EBS wins €32m court order for unpaid loans on deal

THE EBS has secured summary judgment orders for more than €31.7m against Kingspan co-founder Brendan Murtagh and another businessman for their failure to make payments over unpaid loans for land development.

The payments were due under a settlement agreed last year in proceedings over the loans -- which, with interest, now total €33.3m -- for the purchase and development of 32 acres at Little Island, Cork, the Commercial Court heard.

Mr Justice Peter Kelly noted yesterday the terms of the settlement included a proposed raising by the defendants of $60m (€42.4m) in funds and the handing over to EBS of a painting by artist Jack B Yeats entitled 'Looking towards the lake'. That painting was handed over but the fundraising had not been completed to date, the judge was told.

Given the admitted breaches of the settlement, counsel for EBS applied to the court yesterday for final judgment orders against Mr Murtagh, of 'Dunheeda', Kingscourt, Co Cavan, and Greg Coughlan, of 'Fastnet House', Ardbrack, Kinsale, Co Cork.

Declan McGrath, for the defendants, said he could not dispute there had been default of the provisions of the settlement agreement and that EBS was entitled to apply for summary judgment.


However, he urged, measures for the raising of the $60m funds on behalf of the defendants by Assured Capital Management via a "bond" was near finalisation and could be adversely affected by the entry of judgment. Counsel asked that the judgment order should not actually be made for another two weeks.

The fundraising, the court heard, required the defendants to pay some €250,000 to EBS by November 30 last in partial discharge of VAT liabilities and also to pay a further €250,000 each month afterwards until the full VAT liability to EBS was paid off. The settlement also provided the defendants were to use funds raised to pay EBS some €300,000 per month from March 2010 to pay interest on other loans and to use their best efforts to increase those repayments from September 2010.

If there was any breach of the terms of settlement, EBS would be entitled to final judgment for all monies owed, it was also agreed.

Granting summary judgment, the judge said it was acknowledged there had been a breach of the settlement obligations. In addition, given EBS's refusal to consent to the application not to enter judgment at this stage and the acknowledgement time was "of the essence" here, he would also decline to direct that the judgment order not be drawn up now.

Irish Independent