Dermot Desmond owed more than €30m by loss-making eSpatial Solutions

Dublin-headquartered geomapping business has racked up losses of €40.8m

Dermot Desmond and his companies are now owed more than €30 million by the businessman’s loss-making geomapping company eSpatial Solutions. The company, which is headquartered in Dublin but trades mostly in the US, has now accumulated losses of close to €41 million, its recently-filed accounts for last year reveal. It made an annual loss of more than €1.3 million in 2021, the accounts show.

With the exception of one year, 2016, eSpatial has been loss-making for many years, and Mr Desmond and his International Investment and Underwriting (IIU) group have been propping up the business with loans for about two decades.

The recently-filed accounts lay out the full extent of the financial support that Mr Desmond has provided to the group, whose products are used by companies to map sales data and organise their sales teams on the ground. IIU has provided eSpatial with almost €17 million in loans since 2004. It appears that only one tranche of those debts, €3.6 million in loan notes, has any security attached.

In addition to the three tranches of loan notes, eSpatial has also racked up an interest bill due to IIU of €13.65 million, which is currently unpaid. Interest of about €1.2 million was accrued to Mr Desmond’s investment group last year.

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The directors of the business were upbeat about eSpatial’s prospects in a note attached to the recent accounts. They said its “performance and cashflow” was strong in 2021, during which its cash balance almost doubled to €1.45 million.

The company employs 31 staff and is ultimately controlled by an Isle of Man company, Braebrun, linked to Mr Desmond. eSpatial was founded in 1997, and Mr Desmond became an investor in 2001. He now owns close to 90 per cent of the business, with the rest of the shares owned by the State via Enterprise Ireland and a handful of current and former executives.

Its blue-chip customer base includes Volvo, Coca Cola and Henkel, the maker of Loctite glue.

Mark Paul

Mark Paul

Mark Paul is Business Affairs Correspondent of The Irish Times. He also writes the Caveat column