Retailers fear job losses as landlords roll out rent hikes

Seen and Heard: Legal battle over M50 contract; AIB bankers’ pay; Ryanair Sun launch

Vulture funds and institutional landlords are introducing rent hikes on retail properties, according to the Sunday Business Post. It reports that two of the Republic's largest shopping centres – in Blanchardstown and Dundrum – have introduced significant increases. Retailers are warning of potential job losses and closures. Dundrum retailers are also upset that parking charges have also gone up by €1 per hour at Dundrum.

M50 toll contract legal dispute

A subsidiary of one of the world's largest toll road operators is the second failed bidder for the operation of tolls on the M50 to take legal action over the tender process. The Sunday Independent reports that Transcore LP has followed Emovis in seeking to have the decision to award the winning bid to the Turas consortium set aside. The contract, valued at up to €400 million has been suspended.

AIB bosses unlikely to get share-based rewards

Senior management at AIB are unlikely to get share-based rewards when the bank floats on the stock market in the coming weeks, according to the Sunday Times. This is due to political fears of igniting a public backlash over bankers' pay. It comes as both AIB and Bank of Ireland are lobbying Minister for Finance Michael Noonan for greater flexibility on bankers' remuneration, claiming they risk losing staff because of the €500,000 pay ceiling.

London bankers unimpressed with Dublin infrastructure

Staying in the world of senior bankers, the chairman of AIB has warned that highly paid London bankers may be put off moving to Dublin due to the "greater number of Michelin-starred restaurants in London". The Sunday Business Post states that London has 64 Michelin-starred restaurants, compared to five in Ireland. Richard Pym told a House of Lords select committee on Brexit that Dublin's financial services centre was "a good one", but the city's "infrastructure is not strong".


Mercury seeks IBI Corporate Finance advice

Mercury Engineering, one of the country's largest contractors, has appointed IBI Corporate Finance to advise on a potential sale, the Sunday Times reports. It estimates the firm's annual billing at €400 million.

Launch of Ryanair Sun

Ryanair launched a separate unit in Poland to compete in the holiday charter market. Ryanair Sun will initially operated out of Poland using five Boeing 737 aircraft, but may be rolled out across other major charete markets such as Germany, the Sunday Business Post reports.

Noonan support key in Coveney’s FG leadership bid

Supporters of Minister for Housing Simon Coveney believe he could increase his chances of becoming the next Fine Gael leader if he secured the public support of Finance Minister Michael Noonan. The Sunday Independent reports senior Fine Gael figures who are backing Mr Coveney said offering Mr Noonan another year in the Department of Finance could result in a public show of support from the Minister.