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Monday 11 December 2017

McNamara in crunch talks with NAMA over liquidation threat

Donal Buckley and Dearbhail McDonald

A FLAGSHIP company owned by developer Bernard McNamara is facing liquidation as he desperately fends off efforts by NAMA to appoint a receiver over the construction company founded by his father and several of his key personal investments.

The Irish Independent -- which yesterday revealed that the Clare-born builder is in last minute negotiations with NAMA to avoid the "imminent" appointment of a receiver to construction firm Michael McNamara and Co -- has learned that a major international insurance company will ask the High Court to wind up Mr McNamara's Radora Developments Ltd.

Last night, high-level talks between NAMA and Mr McNamara, who has admitted that he has overall debts of €1.5bn, were continuing.

It is understood that Farrell Grant Sparks, the accountancy and financial advisory firm, is on standby to act as receiver for NAMA if the talks break down.


Mr McNamara has so far avoided a series of legal actions that could have resulted in bankruptcy.

But the net appears to be closing in on the former Fianna Fail councillor whose Radora Developments Ltd was developing the Elm Park prime office and apartment development in Dublin 4. The move by Friends First could yet pose a challenge to NAMA as the taxpayers' bad bank is believed to have taken over Radora's loans.

If the court appoints Friends' liquidator then NAMA may be forced to appoint a receiver in order to control the sale of some of the most valuable real estate in Dublin 4. A receiver would also add to the NAMA costs for managing Radora's loans.

Friends First bought one of the Elm Park office blocks before it was completed in 2005 in a deal reputed to be worth €45m. By providing development funding Friends were expecting to get the eight storey property at what would prove to be a keen price.

So confident was Radora that the building would rent out successfully that it agreed to pay €1m to Friends if the offices were unlet for the first two years. Both its block and another block are still unlet and Friends are believed to be taking the petition now in order to force Radora to pay the €1m.

Irish Independent

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