Financial Regulator 'technically right' - Quinn


SEÁN QUINN said yesterday he accepted that the Financial Regulator was “technically right”, but that he should have met directors of the Quinn Group before the company was put into provisional administration.

Speaking to Shannonside Northern Sound radio before a rally took place in Cavan town, Mr Quinn said the past week had not been easy. “I feel disappointed in myself, to have allowed it to happen. I feel disappointed that we bought so many shares and just got it wrong . . .

“I feel disappointed that we weren’t allowed to sort it out without this sort of controversy and without this hassle,” he said.

“We should never have got ourselves into it. We were wrong. I believe he [the Financial Regulator] took the wrong action. I believe the regulator himself should have met group directors. I don’t believe it should have arrived in court and us not knowing anything about it.” Mr Quinn said he had not even met the “No 1” or “No 2” in the regulator’s office.

Asked whether his actions in running Quinn Insurance and buying shares were based on someone else’s advice, he said: “No, I wouldn’t be blaming anybody only myself. It was my idea to push forward and buy shares.”

He said his family had even asked why he was buying shares in other companies when he had no control over those companies.

“I accept that we are technically wrong, but there is nobody . . . saying we haven’t got a very good model and a proven track record making money, so if we have, why put us into administration?”

Mr Quinn said he had no problem paying his debts, “but in order to make money you have to have tools. The Government and the regulator has taken away my tools, so it leaves it a wee bit more difficult for me in the short term . . . I need my tools back.”

The interview was broadcast live over speakers as the crowds gathered for a rally in Cavan town yesterday evening. It was organised by Cavan Chamber of Commerce to show solidarity with the Quinn Group and its employees. The crowd of several thousand applauded loudly when Mr Quinn said his word was his bond.