Nama takes control of Bord Gáis Energy Theatre and Point Village

State assets agency moves against businessman and developer Harry Crosbie

27/10/2012-DUBLIN NOW-Side view of Bord Gais Theatre taken from Martin's Terace,Dublin. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / THE IRISH TIMES

27/10/2012-DUBLIN NOW-Side view of Bord Gais Theatre taken from Martin's Terace,Dublin. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / THE IRISH TIMES

 

State assets agency Nama has moved against businessman and developer Harry Crosbie, seizing control of his Bord Gáis Energy Theatre and Point Village developments.

Both high-profile dockland sites are owned by companies controlled by Mr Crosbie.

The developer is understood to owe Nama in the region of €500 million, directly through his Crosbie Group developments and indirectly through his organisation’s involvement with other businesses.

The agency appointed Grant Thornton accountants, Stephen Tennant and Paul McCann, as receivers to the companies overnight.

A Nama spokesman declined to comment on the matter.

The fate of the Mr Crosbie’s other flagship property, the O2, is unclear at this stage.

Formerly the Point Depot, the concert centre was not among the assets over which receivers have been appointed.

Mr Crosbie is a 50 per cent shareholder in the O2, with the US concert business, Live Nation, owning the rest of the shares.

It is not known whether Nama’s move will extend to other assets of Mr Crosbie in time, as has been the case with other major developers.

When contacted earlier today, Mr Crosbie said he would not be commenting on the matter.

The developer owes Nama €250 million directly through his Crosbie Group developments.

Nama acquired this debt when it took over loans that his companies had drawn down from AIB.

A mortgage with AIB taken out in 2008 includes a charge over “all property and assets both present and future of Harry Crosbie.”

The Crosbie Group is also party to another €250 million due to the agency for developments involving other individuals and companies.

Mr Crosbie recently resigned as a director of Grand Canal Theatre Ltd, which operates the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre on Dublin’s Grand Canal basin.

In addition, he has resigned as director of several companies associated with the Point Village, which consists of a number of developments around the O2, including the Gibson Hotel.

Speaking to RTE in 2011, Mr Crosbie said Nama had been “very helpful” in assisting him complete the Grand Canal Theatre development by affording working capital to complete the project.

He said the agency had also funded the completion of the Point Village.

Mr Crosbie suggested that the State agency would be repaid only the actual amounts that it paid for the loans and not their full value.