Monday, July 4, 2011

Squeaky bum time for the McCann's Balmoral, as €70m of loans fall due -


Sunday July 03 2011

BALMORAL International Land, the property vehicle of the Fyffes banana empire's McCann family, is facing increasing financial uncertainty this month as more than €70m of loans fell due at the end of June.

Shares in the ISEQ-listed company, currently at just one cent, have fallen by 75 per cent in the past 12 months, following €30m of writedowns in their property valuations in December.

Cork developer Michael O'Flynn owns a 14 per cent stake in Balmoral International, worth just €814,000 at the current share price, through a firm called Rosecastle Ltd. He declined to comment last week.

Loans of €45.9m secured on five office buildings in the Netherlands fell due at the end of December, while further loans of up to €129m, which were unsecured and subject to a loan to value covenant but guaranteed by subsidiary companies, began to fall due on June 5, according to the firm's most recent accounts.

An €11.1m loan with a quarterly capital repayment schedule, secured on Belgian warehouse and office properties, is due to be settled in full in October.

Other properties owned by the company, which had €180m of net borrowings at the end of December, include land in Edinburgh, warehouses, offices and industrial buildings in Belfast, Southampton and London, land in Swords, Co Dublin, and offices in Clonshaugh, Co Dublin.

Balmoral declined to comment, while a spokesman said: "The company is in ongoing discussions with all the banks concerned and is confident of a successful outcome."


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