Provisional liquidator appointed to Dublin engineering firm

Problems at subcontractor, which employs 160 people, began in 2018

Ms Justice Reynolds said she was satisfied to appoint Nicholas O’Dwyer, of accountancy firm Grant Thornton, as provisional liquidator. Photograph:   Bryan O’Brien

Ms Justice Reynolds said she was satisfied to appoint Nicholas O’Dwyer, of accountancy firm Grant Thornton, as provisional liquidator. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

 

The High Court has appointed a provisional liquidator to a Dublin-based mechanical engineering subcontractor employing more than 160 people.

On Monday, Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds appointed Nicholas O’Dwyer as provisional liquidator to Haughton and Young Ltd, which worked on many well-known projects including Croke Park Stadium, Google’s Irish headquarters and Twitter’s offices in Dublin.

Haughton and Young was founded in the late 1990s and is based at The Business Centre, Stadium Business Park, Ballycoolin Road, Dublin 11.

The court was told it had been profitable for many years but began to sustain losses from 2018 onwards and is now insolvent.

The losses arose from factors including increased competition in the sector and because the firm was not paid the full amount of monies due to it on certain projects, it was stated.

Moving the petition to wind up the company, Brian Conroy , representing the firm’s main shareholders, said the appointment of a provisional liquidator was urgent.

Demands

He said representatives of the company’s creditors had attended at its premises on Monday morning and were refusing to leave unless their demands were met. There were concerns the company’s assets, including a large number of vehicles, may be taken by creditors, he said.

The appointment of a provisional liquidator would ensure the company’s assets are preserved and later distributed for the benefit of all the creditors in an orderly manner, counsel said.

The company until recently employed more than 200 people and was profitable for many years but its losses began to mount in 2018 and 2019 and it started to experience cash flow difficulties.

The board made attempts to address its financial problems, sought fresh investment in the business and last year had let some staff go, counsel said. However, it had not proven possible to secure the company’s future and the vast majority of shareholders supported the appointment of a provisional liquidator.

Ms Justice Reynolds said she was satisfied to appoint Mr O’Dwyer, of accountancy firm Grant Thornton, as provisional liquidator, and to grant him certain powers. She adjourned the matter to early next month.