Belfast Telegraph

Ex-Quinn glass firm Encirc to be sold in £300m deal

By John Mulgrew

The former Quinn Glass business - once owned by bankrupt Co Fermanagh ex-billionaire Sean Quinn - is expected to be sold to a Spanish firm in a deal reported to be worth around £300m.

Encirc looks set to be bought by "family-owned" listed company Vidrala. And the company moved to alleviate concerns jobs could be lost as a result of such a sale.

Around 1,000 workers are based at the company's Co Fermanagh plant in Derrylin.

Once Ireland's richest man, Sean Quinn lost control of his businesses in 2011 as part of his ongoing battle with Anglo Irish Bank.

A group of banks and lenders took over control of Quinn Group, before rebranding as Aventas in 2013.

It's been selling off parts of the business since the takeover.

Encirc has annual revenues of nearly £257m and boasts contracts with drinks firms such as Diageo and Britvic.

In a statement from Aventas, it said the "preferred bidder" - one of five formal bids made - was a family-controlled firm which had "never closed a plant".

It also dismissed what it said was "misleading and inaccurate" information surrounding Encirc's sale.

"Their (the bidder) stated intention is for Encirc to remain as a separate standalone subsidiary retaining its identity and autonomy," a statement said.

The group also said there was no local "solid bid".

Jimmy Kelly from trade union Unite said he welcomed strong assurances from Aventas that the "preferred bidder will retain the factory's local management team".

"Our first and only priority is to defend the job security and benefits of the workforce," he said.

Last night a public meeting was also held in Co Cavan to discuss the sale of the former Quinn Glass plant in Derrylin.

Meanwhile on Friday, it's expected Mr Quinn will be discharged from bankruptcy after accepting a deal with the court-appointed official supervisor in the Republic.

Belfast Telegraph

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