Belfast Telegraph

Irish ferry firm hit by delivery delay secures loan of €80m

By John Mulligan

Irish Continental Group (ICG) has finalised an agreement that has seen it secure an additional €80m (£70m) loan facility from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

It will be used to finance the construction of the second new vessel for ICG's Irish Ferries operations, which is due for delivery during 2020.

In January ICG exercised an option to have the €165m (£145m) vessel built at a German shipyard. The ship, which will operate on the Dublin-Holyhead route, will be delivered in 2020 and will be the largest cruise ferry in the world in terms of vehicle capacity. It will carry 1,800 passengers and can carry 330 freight units per sailing.

The German shipyard - Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft - was also due to deliver the €154m (£135m) WB Yeats to Irish Continental this summer.

But delivery has been delayed, throwing holiday plans for thousands of passengers who intended to sail on the vessel into disarray. ICG, whose chief executive is Eamonn Rothwell, had already taken a €2.5m (£2.2m) hit in lost revenues when it announced an initial delivery delay.

Last week it announced that the WB Yeats will not be available for sailings this summer. That will cost it another €4.5m, (£4m) it's been estimated. The 50,000-tonne WB Yeats will accommodate 1,885 passengers and crew and have 435 cabins.

Belfast Telegraph

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