One of the country’s most celebrated book firms — Kenny’s Bookshop in Galway — has been engaged with its bank on plans to dispose of properties to pay down bank debts.
The shop was established in 1940, and President Michael D Higgins has had close links with the Kennys over a long period.
Recently filed accounts to the Companies Office show that the losses at Kenny’s Bookshops and Arts Galleries (Holdings) Ltd increased by 65% from €1.1m in 2009 to €1.8m in 2010 with accumulated losses of €6.7m at the end of 2010.
The accounts confirm €1.2m of the loss in 2010 related to the impairment of fixed assets with the firm having a shareholder’s deficit of €6.3m. A note attached to the accounts, however, states: “Projections for future periods indicate an improved position.”
The firm has bank loans and overdrafts totalling €8m and “discussions with the company’s bankers regarding plans to restructure the company’s activities and potentially dispose of the company’s properties are ongoing”, a note states.
It adds that the firm has breached the terms of its banking facilities and the bank, which has not been named, is agreeable to providing a grace period to allow for refinancing and investment options to be explored.
Karen Golden, granddaughter of the late Des and Maureen Kenny, who set up the business, said: “We are continuing to work through these challenging times with the full support of our bank, with a view to ensuring the long term viability of the company.
“The directors have conducted a strategic review of the company’s operations with a view to curtailing lossmaking activities, implementing a cost cutting programme and evaluating the market for the company’s properties.
“We survived the extremely difficult recession in the 1980s and other challenging periods in the company’s history. These too are challenging times but we are very optimistic about the future.”
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