News on Friday last that Bank of Scotland (Ireland) has had receivers appointed to various assets of county Down developer, MAR Properties and five of its subsidiaries. The BBC reports that there are nine properties affected which are shop units on Bangor’s Main Street – presently for sale through Osborne King here – the Mountpottinger YMCA building in Belfast, houses and development sites in Kircubbin, Groomsport, Bangor, Ballywalter and Carrickfergus.
The MAR group was founded in 1997 by Noel Murphy (“M”), Adam Armstrong (“A”) and William Rush (“R”). The group developed residential and commercial property in Northern Ireland, Scotland and England. In January 2013, it sold the Cultra Railway Station in county Down. Some of its loans are in NAMA, and loans to MAR are understood to be one of NAMA’s largest exposures in Northern Ireland and no doubt NAMA will study the latest developments carefully.
NAMA has acquired GBP 3bn (€3.5bn) of loans from Northern Ireland by reference to original par values and paid GBP 1.26bn (€1.5bn), and to date, it has advanced €125m to Northern Irish developers for the development of projects, though some of this money has been spent in the mainland UK.