Spanish banker emerges as contender for Bank of Ireland top job

Seen & Heard: US property group to buy U Store It; plans to turn Digital Hub into affordable housing delayed; Daft parks mobile billboard at property conference

Alicia Reyes Revuelta is rumoured to be a leading contender to take over from the departing Francesca McDonagh at Bank of Ireland. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

The former head of Wells Fargo bank in Europe, Spanish executive Alicia Reyes Revuelta, has emerged as a contender for Bank of Ireland chief executive. The Sunday Times reports that speculation is mounting in banking circles that the bank will appoint another woman to succeed Francesca McDonagh, who will leave the role in September. Gavin Kelly, its head of retail banking, is tipped to be the interim chief executive until a permanent appointment is cleared by regulators.

Heitman acquires U Store It for €104m

US real estate company Heitman is paying €104 million to acquire U Store It, which operates six self-storage outlets across the country. The US investor will also pay a further €20 million to purchase four development sites in Dublin and Belfast, the Sunday Times reports. U Store It’s founder, Seamus Lonergan, will stay on to help the business expand across Ireland. Heitman has previously invested in the Irish housing market.

Digital Hub shutdown deferred

The Digital Hub in Dublin, which the Government had planned to shut down and hand over for affordable housing this year, is still taking on start-up tenants and may still be operating in 2030, its chief executive Fiach Mac Conghail has told the Sunday Independent.

The Government last year announced it would shut it down and hand it over to the Land Development Agency, but the hub has signed up a further 18 tenants this year and may be back at 70 per cent occupancy by year end.


Daft goes mobile after property conference ban

Property website parked a mobile billboard advertising its services in the car park of the Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone during an industry conference of property agents, after it was banned from the conference by its organisers, reports the Business Post.

The Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers, which recently complained to competition regulators about Daft, was holding its annual conference in the hotel at the time. Daft has previously sponsored the event but was not invited on July 9th this year.

Council told not to implement data centre ban

Minister of State for Housing Peter Burke ordered South Dublin County Council not to implement an effective ban on new data centre development, according to the Business Post.

The newspaper says the Minister intervened in relation to a proposal by the council to designate data centres as “not permitted” in areas zoned for employment. It says the Minister argued that the council’s effective ban in its development plan was not in line with the National Planning Framework.

Junk Kouture targets international expansion

The Business Post also reports that Junk Kouture, a sustainable fashion competition that showcases clothes made from recycled materials, is raising €5 million and targets significant international expansion.