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MAR group’s firms in administration

Four pub and property companies in the MAR group have been placed into administration.

John Hansen of KPMG was appointed by the High Court to run Scandown Developments, Dee Inns, Wen Inns and Scandown Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) last week. The companies represented the licensed trade side of the Bangor-based property giant MAR, whose assets were estimated to be worth £1m three years ago.

Now the premises in the group, which include Lisbarnett House, the Portaferry Hotel and Hillsborough’s Hillside, are being run by the Beannchor Group.

Beannchor is set to acquire the 15 venues over the next few weeks. It’s understood that company will pay around £7.5m for the chain.

Commercial property agents have welcomed the prospect of a major acquisition. John Martin of Osborne King said: “It’s excellent news because Bill Wolsey is the most experienced pub operator in the province at present.”

MAR was set up by Noel Murphy, Adam Armstrong and William Rush in 1997.

Documents filed at Companies House reveal that Mr Murphy and Mr Rush resigned from Scandown Developments and Wen Inns on May 19.

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Former MAR chief executive Robert Horner resigned from the companies last September.