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Leonard Curtis and Moorfields make toxic asset panel 10 April 2013

Leonard Curtis and Moorfields Corporate Recovery have been appointed to Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency’s (NAMA) UK panel of recovery and restructuring practitioners.

NAMA is a state-run agency set up to purge Irish banks of their toxic assets. It has created two insolvency panels covering corporate appointments in Ireland and the UK.

NAMA is the largest property organisation in the world, with a debt book totalling some €74 billion, 33% of which is against land, property and other assets in the UK.

Leonard Curtis , which has 10 regional offices across the UK, will be providing the agency with independent professional advice on how to realise the best possible return for these property assets.

The appointment of Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group to NAMA’s UK-based (corporate) panel follows last month’s announcement of a joint venture between the insolvency specialists and Irish accountancy firm Hughes Blake.

The joint venture has been named Leonard Curtis Hughes Blake (LCHB) and has been formed in response to the growing demand for cross-border restructuring, recovery and insolvency expertise. LCHB will offer a range of corporate restructuring and debt management services for cases that involve assets located in both jurisdictions.

Hughes Blake is a member of NAMA’s Irish (corporate) panel. The accountancy firm offers a range of professional services from offices in Dublin, Wexford and Cork. Both independent professional advisory’s are being sought by the Agency for their expertise and knowledge of the industry.

NAMA was established by the Irish Government in December 2009. To date it has raised around €6.9 billion from property sales and a further €3.6 billion in rent from properties controlled by debtors and receivers, according to its 2012 end of year statement.

The latest casualty of the Irish banking crisis is state-owned Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, formerly Anglo Irish Bank. Its liquidation will see some €14 billion of the bank’s debt transferred to NAMA.

Michael Healy, director at Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group, said: “We will be providing expertise in the areas of corporate restructuring and asset recovery. The proportion of UK property assets is significant and achieving the best possible return on these assets is paramount to the Irish taxpayer.”

Neil Hughes, managing partner at Hughes Blake, added: “The growing number of cross-border insolvency cases that are currently being dealt with by the banks and NAMA require expertise and insight from practitioners in the UK and Ireland.

“The addition of our joint venture partner, Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group, to NAMA’s UK-based insolvency practitioners’ panel will greatly aid us in bringing about optimal results in cross-border cases.”

The agency issued an invitation to tender in October 2012 with a view to appointing panels for both Ireland and the UK who have experience of acting in complex corporate, property enforcement and insolvency cases.

Phil Smith, partner at Moorfields Corporate Recovery said: “Not only does this award recognise the experience of our property solutions team it further cements our position in the market place”

Simon Thomas, partner, Moorfields Corporate Recovery said “Moorfields created a unique property offering prior to the recession because we recognised a market need. Our team is now sought out for its unique strategies and proven expertise”



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