One51 and Dublin Port on verge of selling Greenore Port

Sale of Co Louth facility expected to be for figure in low single-digit millions

Sale of the strategically located port is being handled by IBI Corporate Finance. Photograph: Eric Luke

Sale of the strategically located port is being handled by IBI Corporate Finance. Photograph: Eric Luke

Sat, Aug 9, 2014, 01:00

Investment company One51 and the State-owned Dublin Port Company are on the brink of selling Greenore Port in Co Louth to a new owner for a figure in the low single-digit millions.

The sale of the strategically located port is being handled by IBI Corporate Finance, which is in the final stages of closing the sale of the port.

The port is owned equally by One51 and the Dublin Port Company via a company called Renore Ltd, which was set up to acquire the operations of the port in April 2002.

The annual report of the Dublin Port Company 2013 shows that the company has invested €8.8 million in Renore but that this investment has been written down to just €750,000.

“There is no significant growth potential in Greenore Port over the coming years,” a note to the accounts of Dublin Port Company concludes when explaining the write-down to its state shareholder.

Accounts for Renore Ltd, the company that own the port, show it made a profit of just €12,000 in the financial year to the end of 2012. The company valued its fixed assets at €7.6 million but it also had an interest free unsecured loan from its shareholders of €7.6 million.

One51’s annual report in 2013 states that its investment in Renore is by way of shareholder loans. “During the year, the group forgave loan balances of €5.0 million with Renore Ltd,” its accounts said.

Under the terms of the agreement governing the joint venture behind the port its general manager is an employee of One51, whose costs are charged to Greenore.

Potential

Greenore Port has however considerable potential if its new owner has sufficient funds to invest in expanding it to become a competitor to other major ports.

Greenore Port is located next to the Dublin-Belfast economic corridor so it is capable of servicing both cities.

An Bord Pleanála deemed Greenore Port one of the country’s “critical infrastructure assets” and during the boom significant investment plans were drawn up for its expansion.

This would have in part allowed the Dublin Port Company to sell off non-core sites to developers who were prepared to pay huge sums for sites near Dublin city during the boom.

One51 declined to comment on the future of Greenore. The Dublin Port Company did not respond to requests for comment.

One51 has been gradually selling non-core assets as the company streamlines its operation to deliver greater value to shareholders.

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