CarVal pursues Tony Mansfield over property debts

US fund has more than €400,000 of security on Mansfield’s property near Citywest

The former headquarters of Bank of Scotland (Ireland) at St Stephen’s Green in Dublin.  Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

The former headquarters of Bank of Scotland (Ireland) at St Stephen’s Green in Dublin. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

 

A distressed assets fund linked to the US investment giant CarVal is pursuing the eldest son of the late developer Jim Mansfield over debts. The fund has more than €400,000 of security on a luxury property he owns near Citywest in Dublin.

Feniton Property Finance is planning to take High Court action against Tony Mansfield, who ran the Mansfield family’s plant hire business and remains a director of several companies linked to the family.

Since the financial crash, the Mansfield’s empire has largely been picked apart by banks and receivers, on foot of up to €280 million in commercial and development debts racked up by the late patriarch during the boom.

Jim Mansfield, who developed the Citywest hotel and golf course, was largely backed by Bank of Scotland (Ireland), which along with Nama was pursuing him for those debts when he died in 2014.

Land Registry documents show that Tony Mansfield also borrowed €432,000 from BoSI in the summer of 2008, before the full extent of the looming financial crash had become clear. That loan was secured with a mortgage against his home in Coldwater Lakes, a luxury development in Saggart, a short drive from the hotel and golf course at Citywest.

In 2015, BoSI’s parent, UK banking group Lloyds, sold a €1.2 billion portfolio of Irish commercial loans to a consortium including Bank of Ireland, Goldman Sachs and CarVal.

Land Registry documents show that later in 2015, the BoSI mortgage on Mr Mansfield’s Coldwater Lakes property transferred to Feniton. It appears that this transfer was queried by Mr Mansfield. He retained the family’s solicitor, Noel Smyth, to write to the Land Registry about the transfer that December.

Since then, a dispute has arisen between Mr Mansfield and Feniton over the repayment of his debts. The CarVal fund has hired Ivor Fitzpatrick solicitors to seek a summary judgment against Mr Mansfield in the High Court.

A summary judgment is considered a hawkish debt recovery tactic, as it can allow a lender to chase any or all of a borrower’s assets for loan repayment if it is granted, regardless of whether those assets were originally put up as collateral.

Mr Mansfield has yet to file a defence to the fund’s claim against him, and may dispute the debts owed. It was not possible to contact him for comment on Monday, while CarVal declined to comment on the dispute.

Mr Mansfield is a director of the family’s Finnstown Castle hotel, which they bought back out of receivership in 2015. A woman who answered the phone at the hotel on Monday said she would send a message to Mr Mansfield, but The Irish Times received no response.

The Coldwater Lakes address is still listed as Mr Mansfield’s address on documents with the Companies Registration Office, as well as a new plant hire business he appears to co-own.

His brother, Patrick Mansfield, is also listed as the owner of a separate house in the Coldwater Lakes development. That property is not connected to the dispute with Feniton.