Public Accounts Committee to focus on Shannon Development

Shannon Group chief executive Neil Pakey
Shannon Group chief executive Neil Pakey

The Committee of Public Accounts will tomorrow meet with representatives from the former Shannon Development Company to consider its 2013 accounts.

Neil Pakey, chief executive of the Shannon Group which has taken over responsibility for Shannon Development and Stephen Curran of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation will appear before the committee.

Following the announcement that Shannon Development would merge with Shannon Airport in 2012, the enterprise functions transferred to Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland, with the tourism functions transferring to Fáilte Ireland.

Shannon Group plc was formally created last month.

Key issues which the PAC are expected to explore tomorrow include:

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  • The rental income stream and profit on sale of assets
  • The rationale for a write down of assets €33 million
  • Restructuring costs amounting to €1 million and early retirement/ redundancy costs of over €3million

Committee Chairman John McGuinness TD says: “Tomorrow’s meeting with Shannon Development will provide an opportunity to assess the 2013 accounts of the State Company. A €5 million profit on sale of assets and investments was realised during the period and the Committee will wish to examine the process leading up to the sales.

“We will also question Shannon Development representatives on the management of rental income, which amounted to €11 million, and the levels of occupancy in properties owned by the company.

“The Committee will also wish to assess the benefits that will flow from the creation of Shannon Group plc last month. About €1 million was spent on restructuring costs in 2013, including on professional fees, and we will be keen to explore what services were provided.

“About €3.4 million was spend on early retirement and redundancy schemes – amounting to about €100,000 per employee – and we will wish to explore the terms of the scheme”, Deputy McGuinness said.