Founder and executives in dispute over ownership of nursing home group

business
Founder And Executives In Dispute Over Ownership Of Nursing Home Group Founder And Executives In Dispute Over Ownership Of Nursing Home Group
David O'Shea is founder of the BlackBee group, which is behind the Aperee nursing homes group operating in Cork, Kerry, Kilkenny and Galway
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High Court reporters

The founder of a group which invests in nursing homes is in dispute with his two top executives over the ownership of nearly €11 million worth of shares, the Commercial Court has heard.

David O'Shea is founder and owner of the BlackBee group, which is behind the Aperee nursing homes group operating in Cork, Kerry, Kilkenny and Galway.

Mr O'Shea, BlackBee Funds ICAV and City Quarter Capital II plc, which Mr O'Shea is also a director of, have brought proceedings against Aperee CEO, Paul Kingston, and its chief financial officer, Hazel O'Connor, seeking declarations that the defendants have no legal or beneficial interest in the share capital and associated voting rights of Aperee Holdings Ltd.

An injunction is also sought restraining the defendants from asserting they have a 40 per cent interest in the various Aperee companies.

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The dispute arose following a plan to sell 12 nursing homes and two greenfield sites last year.

The defendants deny the claims and say they are entitled to 40 per cent of the profits following the sale and exit of the Aperee group.

Bidders

The case was admitted to the Commercial Court on Monday, on consent between the parties, by Mr Justice Denis McDonald.

Last year, it was decided to sell 12 homes and sites when, Mr O'Shea said in an affidavit, it emerged Mr Kingston had already prepared an offering document and engaged an agent to sell a certain portfolio within the group. This was an unauthorised action, Mr O'Shea said.

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On April 1st last, solicitors for the defendants wrote asserting the 40 per cent ownership in the Aperee group and associated companies, a move which was also disclosed to the preferred bidders which Mr O'Shea said had been lined up for the deal.

Mr O'Shea said insofar as the preferred deal was concerned, he believed the defendants were "on a wrecking mission". The preferred bidders were now not willing to enter any agreement while the 40 per cent beneficial ownership claim remains and have withdrawn their offer, he said.

Bernard Dunleavy SC, for the plaintiffs, and Louis McEntagart, for the defendants, agreed it was a case that needed to be expedited.

Mr Justice McDonald approved a timetable on how the proceedings should progress and adjourned it to July.

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