Iceland accused of moving ‘significant’ sums out of Irish business ahead of sale

Iceland has been accused of transferring “significant” sums of money from its Irish business in the lead up to the division’s sale in February this year.

According to The Telegraph, Metron Stores, the owner of Iceland Ireland, wrote to executive chairman Richard Walker with “concerns around several transactions” that took place in the run-up to its acquisition.

The letter alleges that more than £1.37m (€1.6m) was taken out of the company’s accounts, as well as £772,476 (€900,000) from sales in the week between the deal being signed and its completion.

Metron’s letter also claims £2.23m (€2.6m) of debt was left unpaid despite Iceland agreeing to settle outstanding debts prior to the deal.

The owner claims that the sums transferred out of the accounts by Iceland UK would have settled these debts.

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The retailer is now understood to be considering a defamation claim against Metron, arguing its letter was an attempt to damage its reputation.

A spokesman for Iceland told The Telegraph: “All normal trade debts of Iceland Ireland up to the date of the sale were settled by Iceland UK, and employees paid in full.

“[Iceland is] entitled to the revenue generated from sales up to the date of sale and this is why funds were transferred from the company’s bank accounts to Iceland UK prior to completion.”

The news comes as Metron Stores entered examinership in June – Ireland’s version of administration – after accumulating debts of £30.9m (€36m).



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