Belfast Telegraph

Troubled hotel's takings hit £1.7m as developer is poised to close deal

By John Mulgrew

Belfast hotel Ten Square has clawed back £1.7m in takings since administrators moved in, as a well-known property developer moves closer to buying the business.

Ten Square on Donegall Square is an award-winning hotspot in the city centre which had been owned by property developer John Miskelly.

But his company lost control of the business in January when administrators EY moved in.

It's understood Kilmona Holdings, led by businessman Paddy Kearney, is in the process of closing a deal to take on the hotel.

Paddy Kearney is one of the so-called Maple 10 - a group of investors who bought shares in Anglo Irish Bank in 2008 in a deal to dilute Co Fermanagh businessman Sean Quinn's stake in the investor.

Ten Square is currently being run by the Dalata Hotel group.

In an update from administrators EY, it says it's "highly unlikely" there will be "sufficient funds" to pay unsecured creditors, owed more than £150,000.

The hotel - which was run under the company name of Yorkshire House Ltd - had its debt bought from Nama, the Republic's bad bank, by Promontoria Eagle Ltd last July.

It had owed Promontoria Eagle Ltd - a company set up by Cerberus to deal with its assets here - almost £3m.

And in the latest update, the administrators say they are "confident" they will "achieve a sale of the hotel" and "protect employment and enhance realisations to creditors as a whole". Since administrators were appointed in January, the firm turned over almost £1.7m. According to the update on progress made by EY, bookings made before the administration "continue to be honoured" while the business "continues to accept new bookings".

The report says wages to staff "were paid up-to-date on appointment".

The administrator report said it continued to run the hotel to "establish a baseline trade history".

It said that was due to the lack of pre-appointment financial information available.

Belfast Telegraph

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