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Monday 25 September 2017

Regency's €2m losses after feud murder fallout

The Regency Hotel where David Byrne was shot dead last year
The Regency Hotel where David Byrne was shot dead last year

The Dublin hotel where gangster David Byrne (33) was shot dead last year has posted losses of almost €2m.

Company accounts also showed the Regency Hotel received a net insurance pay-out of €150,000 as a result of the gangland shooting and its impact on the hotel business.

The accounts for Regan Development, which runs the hotel, showed it recorded a pre-tax loss of €1.82m in the 12 months to the end of last July.

This was despite posting a gross profit increase of 11pc, going from €4.8m to €5.3m.

The figures include profits made from the operation of a supermarket.

However, the overall loss was in large part a result of an exceptional cost of €3.2m, which was not explained in the accounts.

Difficult

Distribution costs of €2m, administrative expenses of €1.9m and interest charges of €183,080 were also posted in the accounts.

They showed an additional €350,000 was paid out in legal fees as part of a settlement last October.

The payout was made on October 6 last year.

In a sworn statement before the High Court, James McGettigan, director of Regency Hotel firm Regan Development Ltd, said that the hotel had suffered immense reputational damage and loss of business in the weeks which followed the shooting.

However, yesterday Mr McGettigan confirmed the Regency business had bounced back and trade was back to similar levels to 2015.

"We are happy with the performance of the hotel but with the refurbishment work currently undertaken it hopefully will do much better," he said.

"The first half of 2016 was a difficult period for the hotel; however, the second half saw a significant recovery in our business.

"We have been working closely with our customers and our turnover and occupancy rates have returned to similar levels as 2015."

The company is making fresh investment, and Mr McGettigan said: "We are in the process of preparing for a substantial renovation and rejuvenation of the hotel, which will start with the opening of a fabulous new bar in a few weeks' time."

The accounts filed by Regan Developments Ltd with the Companies Office do not mention the shooting, which sparked off a murderous spiral of violence in the Kinahan-Hutch feud, but refer to it only as "an unfortunate incident" in a note.

Earlier this year, the firm emerged from examinership, which was initiated due to other debts which the Regency Hotel was used as collateral for and not due to the performance of the hotel.

Shareholder funds at Regan Development Ltd at the end of last July totalled €1.3m. The firm's cash pile during the year decreased from €2.7m to €253,769.

Numbers employed by the firm decreased from 146 to 127.

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