There’s a midly vulgar expression we use in my neck of the woods “you have your shite” which roughly means “you have no chance whatsoever” as well as implying criticism of your efforts. I have a feeling – unconfirmed, I should stress – that this expression or something similar is being muttered at NAMA HQ this afternoon.
This afternoon, Dublin-based developer Treasury Holdings which is involved in colossal legal wrangles with NAMA has called – presumably “called” on NAMA – to appoint mediators to deal with Treasury’s loans now controlled by the Agency. Treasury is the company founded by Richard Barrett and Johnny Ronan and is understood to be one of NAMA’s Top 10 developers. NAMA has appointed administrators and receivers to Treasury assets on foot of over nearly €2bn in outstanding loans. NAMA is also pursuing Messrs Barrett and Ronan for up to €20m following a transfer of assets by the duo on the eve of NAMA taking over its loans and NAMA has obtained security for costs in its legal battles (should Treasury lose of course). On the other hand, Treasury itself is suing NAMA over its dealings with the Battersea Power Station inLondonand is also pursuing a judicial review of NAMA’s dealings generally with its loans. During this past week alone we learned that the NAMA v Treasury court case involving the so-called TAIL transaction is to be heard in October 2012, whilst Treasury’s judicial review is set to commence in July 2012. Treasury is a formidable company led by “big beasts” but NAMA has not shied away from its objectives and seems to be giving as good as it gets in the ongoing legal battles.
This afternoon, Treasury has released its version of its dealings with NAMA. In response NAMA has not yet commented on the publication today and I don’t think it will, but it goes without saying that NAMA may not necessarily agree with the Treasury interpretation of events. Treasury’s version is available here as a MS Word document, and it says “its aim is to question NAMA’s refusal to engage with it or potential investors in order to maximise the return to the taxpayer and keep intact what is currently the only full spectrum property asset management and development company in Ireland.”
Treasury has also called for “third party mediation” to help sell Treasury’s loans owed to NAMA and the company recalls that it has previously engaged with at least three non-Irish investment companies to help resolve its loans owed to NAMA.
There is a personal statement from what are described as “current shareholders of Treasury Holdings Richard Barrett and John Ronan” who say
“The property crash has brought a new reality to this company. One part of it is that if a deal is done to bring new investors into Treasury Holdings or to sell our loans, the company will then be controlled by others, and not by us. Any deal will have to be approved by NAMA.
What we will get out of any deal is the satisfaction of seeing this company and its unique collection of skills and expertise kept intact and continuing to provide the top quality office and other accommodation that Ireland, and potential foreign direct investors, need. We will also see the jobs of the 300 people who work for Treasury Holdings safeguarded and the company playing a role in Ireland’s economic recovery”
Treasury’s version of events doesn’t appear to add very much to the content of affidavits previously discussed on here, and the nature of the interactions between Treasury and NAMA would suggest on here that these matters will conclude only through a legal process. To stress, there has been no response from NAMA to the developments this afternoon, but the view on here is the unspoken response will be “you have your shite”