There has been talk for some time, of NAMA assembling a “mid-sized” portfolio of loans for sale in early 2013. On 8th January, 2013, the UK commercial property portal, CoStar reported “IBRC and NAMA are both expected to begin offloading Irish loan portfolios this year, with the latter currently in the process of assembling a €230m-sized portfolio, CoStar News understands.”
And during the week, sources were claiming NAMA was assembling a portfolio of loans relating to David Courtney, of Spain Courtney Doyle fame. The €800m par value portfolio, sources say, include loans relating to the Shelbourne Hotel and the development at Merrion Gates in Sandymount, in fact everywhere David Courtney is connected. NAMA, say the sources, was expected to be looking for about €250m for the portfolio. NAMA’s strategy appears to be to package a mix of good and bad Irish property-related loans, so that the Agency doesn’t continue to report a depressing trend of increasingly-lower performing loans – just 17% in Q3,2012 according to the accounts published this week, by reference to the original par values but including restructuring arrangements.
Insiders say that NAMA’s most senior property man, its Head of Asset Management and Board member, John Mulcahy is unhappy about selling Irish property at present, and would prefer to collect rents where possible, and sit on the assets until there is an improvement in the market. So, selling mixed bags of loans won’t exactly be appealing to John Mulcahy’s sensibilities, say insiders, but it is better than selling the better quality properties and being left with the, err, “crap”.
The David Courtney portfolio is understood to be the first of what are expected to be many of such mixed bags of loans, underpinned by Irish commercial property, offered to the market.
Today, the Sunday Times – article not available online without a subscription – gets some information out there first, with reporter Aine Coffey confirming that NAMA is assembling a €800 portfolio for sale but we don’t hear the David Courtney connection.
We learned during the week in a response to a parliamentary question, that when NAMA is selling loans for less than the par value, it employs a loan broker to ensure the sale price is maximized. It is not clear who the agent will be in this case – Eastdil Secured was in the frame, apparently, but it seems the sale isn’t going to them.
NAMA doesn’t generally comment in individual transactions, but a request was made for comment nonetheless, and if one is forthcoming, it will be posted as an update here.