Belfast Telegraph

Ex-directors in move to buy Sean Quinn businesses

By Ed Carty

A consortium including some executives from Sean Quinn's defunct business empire expect to secure a deal to buy two divisions of the old business over the next two months.

The Quinn Business Retention Company (QBRC), headed by the former tycoon's number two Liam McCaffrey, has teamed up with a UK private equity house Endless LLP for the arrangement.

Aventas Manufacturing Group, which took over much of the Quinn businesses along the border after it was put in receivership, said talks on the buyout are ongoing. The deal is for all of the former Quinn manufacturing operations in Derrylin, Co Fermanagh, and Ballyconnell, Co Cavan, and one in Granard, Co Longford – including cement, Tarmac, roof tiles and packaging.

Those behind the deal say between 650 and 800 jobs will be protected in the group and another 2,500 jobs in the border region rely on the Quinn businesses.

It is expected to be finalised before the end of September.

The value of the deal will not be released but it is running to tens of millions, the business consortium said.

Liam McCaffrey, chief executive QBRC, said returning to businesses he has worked in is an exciting move.

"We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Aventas for the acquisition of the Construction Industry Supplies (CIS) and packaging businesses and are excited with the prospect of returning to these businesses that we have previously worked in and managed," he said.

"We will work with Aventas to facilitate stability in the local community that will enable Aventas to achieve its corporate objectives."

A period of examination of company accounts will take place over the next few months.

Paul O'Brien, chief executive of Aventas Manufacturing Group, said: "We are pleased to have reached an agreement in principle with QBRC and Endless LLP.

In a statement the company cautioned there is no certainty a transaction will be concluded.

Factfile

The Quinn Business Retention Company consortium involves three businessmen – John McCartin, a Fine Gael councillor who leads Newtowngore Engineering; John Bosco O'Hagan, managing director of the Specialist Joinery Group, and Ernie Fisher, former managing director of Fisher Engineering.

Mr McCartin said no member of the Quinn family is involved in the deal but Sean Quinn is aware of it.

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