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Abalone Firm in Liquidation

IRELAND - A Cork firm abalone producer has gone into liquidation, with debts of more than 2 million.

Feirm Eisc Chleire Teoranta, which produced abalone, has been in examinership for the past two months.

However, according to reports, a rescue package could not be agreed, and the High Court has appointed KPMG, as liquidator to the firm, who will try to seek a buyer for the firm's assets, including its abalone, land and its aquaculture licences.

The company was set up in the 1990s on Cape Clear island off west Cork. Its financial problems followed an aborted stock market flotation.

Feirm Eisc initially farmed turbot, halibut and rag worms, before starting to farm abalone six year ago.

Reports in the Sunday Irish Business Post say that in 2004, the company agreed a deal with Neptune Ocean Resources and its parent, Asia Abalone. Under the deal, Neptune took a 90 per cent stake in Feirm Eisc, with the remaining 10 per cent controlled by the Cape Clear Cooperative and Udaras na Gaeltachta.

In addition to an initial investment of €440,000,Neptune agreed to pay for the farm’s infrastructure and operating costs. Neptune planned to finance the deal with a flotation on the Alternative Investment Market in London, but the listing never took place.

View the Irish Post story by clicking here.