|In 2004 Derek Quinlan bought the Savoy Hotel group in London for €1.1bn, outbidding Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal. Quinlan subsequently sold the Savoy to Al-Waleed at a profit and was part of groups that had invested in the Connaught, Berkeley and Claridge’s hotels.
The National Asset Management Agency
[NAMA] has appointed Statutory Receivers to take charge of a number of
properties owned personally by former tax inspector and ex-billionaire
Derek Quinlan and members of his immediate family on foot of the debtors’
failure to present and agree an appropriate Business Plan for the repayment of
loans owed to the agency.
Paul McDowell of Knight Frank
Ireland has been appointed by NAMA as the Statutory Receiver.
A spokesman for NAMA warned that other debtors of the agency could face similar
action: “If debtors are unrealistic or uncooperative in
their dealings with NAMA, we won’t hesitate to appoint receivers to protect the
On Tuesday, The Irish Times reported
that NAMA had forced Quinlan to put a high-profile London property on the market
to clear a €300m debt that he owes to the taxpayer.
Quinlan and his co-investor, Glenn Maud, had put the Citigroup centre in Canary
Wharf in east London, one of the tallest skyscrapers in Britain, on the market
with a €1.1bn price tag.
The pair bought the building from Royal Bank of Scotland for €1.48bn in July
2007, weeks before the onset of the global credit crunch.
The international property investor was reported to have quit Ireland with his
family to take up permanent residence in Switzerland in 2009.
Quinlan was believed to owe as much as €1.5bn to Irish banks, much of it to
Anglo Irish Bank.
The Sunday Times reported in 2009
that Quinlan had put a New York townhouse which he bought for €19.8m in 2005 on
the market for €28.3m. The 13,000sq ft property is on 20 East 64th Street, where
neighbours once included Bernard Madoff, the disgraced banker.
He was also selling offices on the same street which he bought for €14m in 2005.
The asking price for the 10,000sq ft building, which came on the market in Oct
2008 for €27.3m, had been reduced to €19.8m.
In Dublin he was selling 1 Elgin Road in Ballsbridge, which reduced from €7.5m
to €5.5m, and in Miami he was seeking buyers for a plot of land in Malibu, next
to a site owned by U2’s the Edge. He also owned a lavish retreat in Cap Ferrat,
France, valued at €75m and two houses on Shrewsbury Road in Dublin which he
bought for €27m in 2006.
Quinlan was one of the most
prominent figures to emerge during the Irish property boom, leading syndicates
of wealthy investors, including Riverdance duo Moya Doherty and John McColgan,
in a number of deals.
In March 2010, the remaining directors of
property investment firm Quinlan Private set up a new real estate business under
the name Avestus Capital Partners. The move followed the resignation of founding
partner Derek Quinlan from the company in 2009.