Seen & Heard: £250m Cerberus write-off for one of ‘Maple 10’
Uniphar to sell pharmacies, banks to anger clients and Panama Papers fall-out
Michael O’Leary of Ryanair: the airline has “intensified” plan to capture a larger share of the business flyer market. Photograph: Niklas Halle’n/AFP/Getty Images
The Sunday Times reports that Patrick Kearney, one of the so-called Maple 10 investors who took part in a scheme to buy shares in Anglo Irish Bank in 2008, received a £250 million (€310 million) write-off from Cerberus, which bought his loans from Nama as part of the Project Eagle sale of Northern Ireland-linked loans.
The Sunday Times also predicts that drug wholesaler Uniphar will sell off more than 20 of its Allcare pharmacies to independent pharmacists over the coming year. It says a senior Uniphar executive wrote to its pharmacy customers to inform them of the sale process, saying it doesn’t want to compete with its own customers.
Angry bank customers
The Sunday Times also reports that some banks are set to “enrage” borrowers who were improperly shifted form tracker mortgages to more expensive standard variable rates, because the institutions are resisting pressure from the Central Bank to pay compensation.
Panama Papers fallout
The Sunday Business Post has published details of lobbying by groups who want the State to “water down” new rules that would reveal the beneficial owners of shell companies, or so-called beneficial trusts. The newspaper says the Panama Papers show that such companies are often used to facilitate tax avoidance. Irish Funds, an industry lobby group, the Law Society and the Irish Tax Institute have all written to the Department of Finance warning against the move.
Ryan’s €59m will
The Sunday Business Post also reports that the estranged wife of the late aviation tycoon, Tony Ryan, left an estate valued at €59 million, according to probate documents. Mairéad Ryan, a “retired nurse” who died last September, married Ryan in the 1960s. They had three sons together, but the couple later separated.
Alltech’s Irish bid
Alltech, the company owned by the Irish-born, US-based billionaire Pearse Lyons, is linked by the Sunday Business Post with a possible bid for Keenan, a Carlow agrifoods business. Keenan employs 250 staff and has sales of more than €40 million.
The Sunday Independent reports that Irish tech start-ups have doubled their levels of fundraising, compared to a year ago. The newspaper says the companies are “seeing an unprecedented surge in cash as international investors cool their interest in mega-companies such as Dropbox and Snapchat”.
Ryanair business plan
Ryanair has “intensified” its plan to capture a larger share of the business flyer market, according to the Sunday Independent. The paper says the airline will focus on digital services and improvements in service for business travellers when it rolls out the latest stage of a marketing campaign.