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Sean Dunne’s Icelandic loan

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A commenter on my blog pointed to a Wikileaks document I hadn’t seen before, and I believe has not received widespread attention. Full PDF.

It includes the page below, which refers to developer Sean Dunne’s liabilities to Icelandic bank Kaupthing. The bank was sort of like Ireland’s Anglo Irish. It was nationalised last year. The document is genuine, according to Wikileaks, Kaupthing initiated legal action against the website within 24 hours of the document’s release…


Dunne owes €84.1m through DCD Builders, the building firm he established in 1983, to Kaupthing. This appears to relate to the infamous Ballsbridge site, which currently operates as D4Hotels. The document says Ulster Bank is also owed €326.5m by Mr Dunne for the site.

The document also outlines that Mr Dunne paid $2.75m, with a loan from Kaupthing, for a 1/16th stake in a Gulfstream Jet, as part of the Netjets fractional ownership scheme. This was done via a company called Zaskari Ltd. Despite a range of internet searches, I have not been able to find anything out about Zaskari.

Netjets is owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway.

His collateral and guarantees are outlined as follows:

Hotel sites: €520m
Overall LTV 62.8% plus a guarantee from Sean Dunne for €250m (76% of total syndicated facility)

DCD Builders LTV covenant 65%
Zaskari Ltd is guaranteed by Sean Dunne

DCD Builders is given a credit rating of B-, while Zaskari Ltd is given BB+

Risk Factors are outlined as:

The client is currently appealing a decision to refuse planning on two elements of the proposed redevelopment scheme. A final decision is expected within 12 months. It is anticipated that the bank will be asked to increase the facility to cover further interest roll up and pre-development costs.

The Kaupthing document dates from September 2008. Obviously since it was made, Mr Dunne’s efforts to get planning permission at Ballsbridge have failed. And he still owes money to Ulster Bank, and Kaupthing. The Independent reported on the loans back in February 2008.

A few questions arise:

What is Zaskari Ltd? Where is it based? Where does it operate? Who are the directors?

What is Ulster Bank’s current postion on the loans outstanding? (Parented by RBS)

Will this be NAMAd?

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2 Responses to “Sean Dunne’s Icelandic loan”

  1. # Comment by P O'Neill Aug 1st, 2009 02:08

    If he has a covenant that he can keep the loan to value ratio below 65%, he’s almost surely in breach of it now with the decline in values and the unravelling of the original plans for the site. Question then is what Kaupthing did about the breach of covenant. There’s probably a lot more behind the scenes legal action than we know about.

  2. # Comment by P O'Neill Aug 6th, 2009 04:08

    Apparently Dunne is a sideshow in the juicy bits of that leak — although note the resemblance of the main allegation to the Anglo 10 Golden Circle operation.