Thursday 19 April 2018

Investor ready to plough €750,000 into the Sunday Business Post

Cliff Taylor, editor of the Sunday Business Post.
Cliff Taylor, editor of the Sunday Business Post.

Tim Healy

THE investor poised to take over the Sunday Business Post will plough €750,000 in to the newspaper if the High Court approves the rescue package.

Mr Justice Peter Kelly will next week consider whether to approve the plan which could see the newspaper, which employs 76  people full time, continue to publish.

Under the terms of the plan, staff at the newspaper have accepted revised terms and conditions and nine voluntary redundancies have taken place.

The investment plan is understood to involve media executive Paul Cooke.

In the Commercial Court yesterday, Mr Justice Kelly  extended protection for Post Publications Ltd, owner of the paper to next Wednesday when the court will make its decision.

Under the plan, super preferential creditors, including  Revenue, will be paid the agreed debt in full.

Unsecured creditors - the largest is Irish Life which is owed nearly €2million in relation to the newspaper office premises at Harcourt Street, Dublin- will get 2.5 per cent of the agreed debt.

Freelance contributors to the newspaper will get 15 percent of what they are owed.

They include broadcaster Vincent Browne who is owed a total of €25,000.

Examiner Michael McAteer, in an affidavit, said the investment agreement with the investor is subject to a number of conditions including that the court approves of the proposal. Mr McAteer said there are also a number of commercial and regulatory conditions to the investment.

Mr McAteer said media reports since the investment agreement was signed last week appear to have ignored these conditions and  he assured the court that he had stressed to all stakeholders that confirmation of the investment scheme  was conditional on court approval

He said where it was necessary to disclose the terms of the investment agreement to the entire staff of the newspaper there was from his perspective no realistic way of preventing the dissemination of the terms.

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