Northern Ireland

McGinnis construction group refinances Cerberus loans

The County Londonderry-based housebuilder McGinnis Group has refinanced its loans that were held by the Cerberus investment fund.

Cerberus took control of the loans last year as part of its £1bn purchase of Nama's Northern Ireland loan book.

McGinnis Group, owned by John McGinnis, has now agreed new finance with two lenders in Dublin and New York.

Mr McGinnis said the deal was a sign of "increased optimism and confidence in the local construction sector".

'Positive platform'

The new lender is a joint venture between Dublin-based Earlsfort Partners and New York investment fund Garrison.

Earlier this year, the same joint venture refinanced the Newry-based property firm Parker Green International.

A company such as Cerberus is not a long-term lender, and when it buys loans it will expect the borrowers to pay them back quickly by seeking new finance or selling assets.

Mr McGinnis said that while the Nama assets formed only part of his group's interests, the refinancing deal "provides a more positive platform from which to advance".

"In the most challenging of business conditions, McGinnis has been able to maintain much-needed jobs throughout the region but now will have greater opportunity to not only secure these jobs longer term but create more," he said.

"The deal also leaves McGinnis Group better placed to undertake new projects and create fresh developments to meet enhanced demand in a resurgent economy."

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