Mr Justice Peter Kelly in the Commercial Court was told the Educational Building Society (EBS) had reached an agreement in principle with Howard Holding’s co-founder Greg Coughlan, Fastnet House, Ardbrack, Kinsale, Co Cork, and Kingspan co-founder Brendan Murtagh, Dunheeda, Kingscourt, Co Cavan.
EBS had also brought proceedings against Brian Madden, Outwoods, Dorea, Rathfeigh, Tara, Co Meath, who has entered no appearance in the case. The failure to enter an appearance meant EBS could apply for judgment for the €31.5m sum against Mr Madden in the High Court Central Office, the judge observed.
Counsel for EBS said an agreement in principle had been reached with Mr Coughlan and Mr Murtagh but there were matters to be finalised. The judge granted an application to adjourn the matter for two weeks.
In relation to the claim against Mr Madden, counsel for EBS said he did not wish to press ahead with that until issues were clarified with the other defendants.
The case arose from loans provided by EBS to two companies, Ballycarney Properties and Moira Properties, both with addresses at Lapps Quay, Cork, for the purchase and development of sites totalling 32 acres at Little Island, Cork.
EBS claimed all three defendants are directors of both companies and executed guarantees in June 2007 over loans totalling more than €31 million advanced to the companies.
Because of the companies’ failure to repay sums due under the loan facilities, EBS served a letter of demand on both companies in November 2008 seeking repayment of the full amount, plus interest.