Sisk swallows hefty loan writedown to walk away from prime Dublin site

Deal sees Sisk take €9m writedown as Parsis takes control of Sutton development

Sisk was owed more than €17m by Parsis, but it recently accepted less than €8m in ‘full and final settlement’. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Sisk was owed more than €17m by Parsis, but it recently accepted less than €8m in ‘full and final settlement’. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

 

The building company John Sisk & Co has taken a €9 million writedown as part of a deal to walk away from a high-profile development site in one of north Dublin’s wealthiest suburbs.

In recent weeks, Sisk transferred its half share of development company Parsis to its joint venture partner, Michael Cotter’s Park Developments. Parsis has spent more than a decade seeking permission to develop part of the Santa Sabina convent site in Sutton.

Company documents show Sisk was owed more than €17 million by Parsis, but it recently accepted less than €8 million in “full and final settlement” as part of a deal to walk away.

Park raised cash from a banking consortium, arranged by Bain Capital, the firm linked to US senator Mitt Romney, to pay off the loan to Sisk.

The documents do not state what, if any, payment Sisk received from Park for its shares in Parsis. Sisk declined to comment last week on the transaction and its reasons for walking away from the Santa Sabina site, which recently received full development approval.

In April, Parsis finally obtained planning permission from Fingal County Council for close to 80 apartments and houses, as well as a creche and car parking, on the Santa Sabina site.

Some well-heeled local residents had mounted a long campaign of opposition to Parsis’s attempts to redevelop the site. The conditions attached to April’s permission were subsequently appealed by Parsis itself to An Bord Pleanála.

Earlier this month, however, just days after the deal was agreed for Sisk to hand over full control of Parsis to Mr Cotter’s company, the appeal was withdrawn and Parsis received An Bord Pleanála’s approval for the convent project.

Park Developments, one of the best-known housebuilders in the State, exited Nama earlier this year after refinancing up to €300 million of loans with Bank of Ireland and AIB.