Archant disputing €500,000 liability with Dublin Daily

 

By Des Cryan in Dublin

A meeting of creditors of the Dublin Daily was told that Archant, the biggest shareholder in the venture, is disputing an alleged liability of almost €500,000 (£355,000) to the publishing company, Dublin Daily News Ltd.

Archant held a 20 per cent stake in the paper, which at its launch had raised €4.2m. The paper folded after four months with the loss of 10 journalists’ jobs on 8 July. Creditors have been told the paper’s liability is €1.67m, but there is a shortfall of €453,900.

Archant’s €1.5m shareholding had been paid for with €1m in cash with consent to provide up to almost €500,000 in services. The precise figure which Archant is now disputing is €496,390 which the Dublin newspaper directors maintain it owes as part of its original investment.

Editor and director Liam Hayes has described the issue as a matter for the company’s legal advisers. The disputed liability is the liquidated company’s single biggest realisable asset.

The 43 members of staff at the company are owed almost €170,000. Some journalists said their final pay cheques had bounced. The general secretary of the NUJ in Ireland, Seamus Dooley, has urged Archant to do the “honourable thing” and meet its liability.

Archant told Press Gazette: “The service agreement was a non-cash item to provide a range of services to assist in the publishing of Dublin Daily.”

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