RTÉ land sale receives five first-round offers

Second set of bids for 8.64 acre RTÉ site have June 8th deadline with up to €90m expected

RTÉ site is located on the Stillorgan Road, close to Donnybrook. There could be complications for a buyer as the land is being sold without planning permission. Photograph: Alan Betson

Five leading local property groups are set to battle it out to purchase the 8.64 acres of land being sold by RTÉ at its Donnybrook complex in Dublin.

Listed property group Cairn Homes, Joe O'Reilly's Chartered Land, Cork developer Michael O'Flynn (backed by Avenue Capital from the US), Richard Barrett's Bartra Capital, and little-known developer Bridgedale submitted bids by the May 11th deadline for first-round offers.

It is understood Savills is now set for the next stage of the process, with the next round of bids due by June 8th.

Cairn is considered a front-runner in the process, given that it raised €52 million this week from a placing of new shares with institutional investors. The company, which is listed in London and has a land bank of about 12,000 housing units, is also seeking to bolster its banking facilities and to generate up to €50 million from the sale of non-core sites of its own.


Speaking to reporters after its annual general meeting in Dublin on Wednesday, chief executive Michael Stanley confirmed the RTÉ site was of interest to the company but added that it was " by no means the only focus".

Apartments and houses

He said the company would most likely seek to construct apartments on the land although it might also build 10-15 houses if successful in its bid.

Savills is guiding €75 million for the site with property sources indicating that it could go for up to €90 million.

While the site is located on the Stillorgan Road, close to Donnybrook, there could be complications for a buyer. The land is being sold without planning permission and its location close to Ailesbury and Shrewsbury Roads could lead to objections from some of Dublin’s wealthiest residents.

Ciarán Hancock

Ciarán Hancock

Ciarán Hancock is Business Editor of The Irish Times

Joe Brennan

Joe Brennan

Joe Brennan is Markets Correspondent of The Irish Times