NAMA insists it will not be lured into giving away its properties at fire-sale prices after it confirmed it has off-loaded €6.2 billion worth of assets since March 2010.
Its chief executive Brendan McDonagh told investors in London recently that €4.3 billion worth of assets had been sold this year, leaving the National Asset Management Agency on course to record an operating profit of €600 million for 2011.
The income was largely being spent paying off NAMA’s loans and helping it to reach its target of repaying a quarter of its debt by 2013. The sold assets were by and large linked to its overseas portfolio after the better-than-expected property market around London propped up the value of some key sites.
In total, eight out of 10 sales related to sites outside Ireland.
However, Mr McDonagh warned investors it would prefer to lend money to see sites developed rather than release them for a poor return.
He said: “NAMA will not hoard assets in the hope of generating speculative gains, nor will it engage in so-called fire sales.
“We will seek to identify opportunities to make capital investment combined with effective asset management with the objective of generating continuing cashflow while ensuring we get the best price we can from each and every sale,” Mr McDonagh said.
The most successful sales have seen NAMA generate better-than-expected returns but it has still to extricate itself from numerous high-profile projects, which may yet see it lose money.
Mr McDonagh’s comments come at a time when NAMA are set to begin selling the Battersea Power Station in London with Chelsea FC amongst those rumoured to be interested in the site.