Seen & Heard: Sports Director owner bids to rescue BHS

Heineken accused of paying pubs to exclude rivals, Nama in €1.5bn debt write-off

Sports Direct founder Mike Ashley: billionaire is among several retailers interested in a deal with administrators. Photograph: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

Sports Direct founder Mike Ashley: billionaire is among several retailers interested in a deal with administrators. Photograph: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

 

Ashley seeking to rescue BHS

Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley is bidding to rescue British retail chain BHS from administration. The Sunday Telegraph reports the billionaire is among several retailers interested in a deal with administrators. Ashley has pledged to save BHS and the jobs of all its workers.

Heineken accused of paying pubs to exclude its rivals

A submission for the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) claims Heineken has offered cash advances to pubs for excluding rival drinks. The Sunday Times reports the submission was made as a part of the CCPC’s investigation into the merger of Heineken’s distribution business with independent distributor Comans.

Nama in €1.5bn debt write-off

Both the Sunday Business Post and the Sunday Independent report that Nama has written off debts totalling €1.5 billion owed by 80 debtors to the agency. Quoting a written response by the Minister for Finance to a Dáil question, the papers report that to date more than half of Nama’s debtors with debts of €18.5 billion have exited the agency.

Electra to bid for AA Ireland

A British private equity group, Electra Partners, is considering a bid of at least €200 million for AA Ireland, the Sunday Times reports. Any sale is expected to include a licensing agreement with its British parent group to continue to use the AA name.

Revenue staff getting older

The Office of the Revenue Commissioners is set to lose 20 per cent of its staff over the next five years due to the demographic profile of its workforce, according to the Sunday Independent. It quotes Revenue Commissioners chairman Niall Cody as saying that staffing is at levels last seen in 1976, with the tax code now much more complex.

Dragon may bid for Petroceltic

Exploration firm Dragon Oil is weighing up a bid for insolvent Irish oil explorer Petroceltic. Describing Dragon Oil as a cash-rich explorer, a Sunday Business Post article reports that the firm bid for Petroceltic in 2014 and is now considering another offer. A number of of other potential bidders are also in the mix.

Petroceltic is under the control of a court-appointed examiner, accountant Michael McAteer, and all potential bids must be lodged with him in the coming days.