U2 co-owners help boost business at the Clarence Hotel

The four-star boutique hotel in Dublin co-owned by U2 recorded profits of €400,000 last year.

U2 co-owners help boost business at the Clarence Hotel

Last month, the Dublin leg of the tour meant the Clarence Hotel was booked out for the week the band performed here.

The hotel employs 64 and the Clarence’s general manager Michael O’Connor said yesterday he was “very happy” with the level of business.

Mr O’Connor said occupancy levels “increased tremendously and the growth in occupancy has continued into this year. I am very pleased and repeat [booking] is increasing as well”.

The Clarence is now posting profits at a multiple of those in 2013, when the firm only recorded profits of €57,933.

Before 2010, the business incurred significant losses.

The boutique hotel was purchased by Bono and The Edge and a consortium of investors in 1992, and the returns show that the hotel’s shareholders have given interest free loans to the business.

They were owed €769,583 at the end of last year.

The shareholders are listed as Bono and wife Ali Hewson, The Edge, financier Derek Quinlan, and developer Paddy McKillen. However, the returns confirm that Bono and The Edge no longer serve as directors.

They have been replaced by businessmen Liam Cunningham and Ronnie Delaney, who also operate the Wagamama restaurants in Ireland.

The returns show that Bono, Ali, and The Edge retain a 50% stake of the firm, with Mr Quinlan and Mr McKillen owning the rest.

Accounts lodged by Brushfield Ltd say that “the company continues to meet its day to day working capital requirements by way of loans from its directors/shareholders which are unsecured and interest free”.

The note goes on: “These parties have confirmed that they will not seek repayment of such loans for the foreseeable future.”

Bono and The Edge in 2006 had a loan of €8.5m to the Clarence written off.

Seven years ago, Bono and The Edge secured planning permission for a €150m redesign by international architects Foster and Partners to transform the hotel.

In 2013, it sought to extend the planning agreement but was stopped in its tracks by Dublin City Council.

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