Cosgrave could be compelled to enter arbitration by US court

Seen & Heard: Web Summit founder’s legal battle; and a row over Irish whiskey

A US court has been asked to compel Paddy Cosgrave to enter arbitration, according to documents filed by lawyers for a Web Summit co-founder and a fund manager, according to a report by the Business Post. Papers filed on behalf of David Kelly and Patrick Murphy last week in the superior courts of San Francisco said Mr Cosgrave had previously agreed to arbitrate disputes and was therefore prevented from litigating his claims. The issue relates to a lawsuit being taken in California by Manders Terrace, the operator of Web Summit and the company in which Mr Cosgrave is a founder and chief executive, against Mr Kelly and Mr Murphy. Manders Terrace accuses the two men of "secretly" establishing an investment fund that it claims benefited from its association with the successful Web Summit, but from which it and Mr Cosgrave were excluded. It claims in court filings that a plan was "hatched" by Mr Kelly and Mr Murphy to establish a fund that "improperly usurped Web Summit's brand, resources and assets".

Row erupts over plan to control ‘Irish whiskey’ label in US

A row has erupted in the Irish whiskey industry over who should hold the right to certify the sector's products as legitimate in the US. The Sunday Independent has learned that whiskey producer West Cork Distillers has challenged an attempt by the Irish Whiskey Association, the sector's largest lobby group, to obtain a certification mark in the US covering Irish whiskey. It sought an extension of time to oppose the application for the certification mark, which was granted until January 2022.

Sing Street maker John Carney buys Mary Robinson’s old home for €4.4m

The writer and director of Once and Sing Street, John Carney, has bought Mary Robinson's former period home on Sandford Terrace in Ranelagh, Dublin, for €4.44 million, according to the Sunday Times. Carney, who most recently made the second series of Amazon Prime's Modern Love, an anthology of love stories based on a New York Times column, and directed episodes featuring big-name stars such as Kit Harington, Sophie Okonedo and Minnie Driver, has moved into the Georgian property with his partner, the actor Marcella Plunkett, and their son. They had been living in another period house in Ranelagh.

Drinks industry wants tax write-off on unpaid bills amid fears of more pub closures

The drinks industry is lobbying the government for a tax write-off on unpaid bills due to its fear of a wave of pub closures, the Business Post reports. It comes at a time when publicans are fearful of their premises being ordered to close again if the number of Covid-19 infections continues to increase. The drinks industry is concerned that there will be more pub closures, which will leave it with more unpaid bills for alcohol supplied. Drinks Ireland, which is part of the employers' group Ibec, has been lobbying Ministers and senior civil servants for a tax write-off on the excise duty on alcohol if pubs do not pay them for it.