AMCON seize Silverbird Companies.This morning, Thursday, June 23, 2016, the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria(AMCON) has taken over the Silverbird Galleria, Victoria Island, Lagos as well as other assets of three companies belonging to politician and entertainment investor,Senator Ben Murray-Bruce and his brothers, Guy Murray-Bruce, Michael Murray-Bruce, and Roy Murray-Bruce.
Reacting to the AMCON seizure news,the founder and co-owner of Silverbird Group, Ben Murray-Bruce on his Twitter handle, said ‘‘ today’s development was not necessarilyunusual for a company that had been in existence for over three decades. “In 36 years, Silverbird has grown and like anybody, it will face challenges. Tough times don’t last. But we, as tough people, outlast them.” Sen. Bruce, said he was in transit on an international flight when officials of Nigeria’s assets management authorities took possession of Silver Group’s properties in Lagos, Abuja and Port-Harcourt in the early hours, added that his businesses would soon be back in operation. “I have been on an international flight and have only just landed,” Mr. Murray-Bruce said. “The situation is being resolved and things will be back to normal.”
According to reports, the assets are being seized following the failure of Murray-Bruce and his brothers to settle an N11 billion loan owed Union Bank and acquired by AMCON. His son, Jonathan Murray-Bruce is also listed as a defendant in the default suit.
Premium Times reports that between 2005 and 2007, the Bruce brothers had used their companies to borrow various sums of money from Union Bank. After they repeatedly defaulted in paying back, AMCON purchased the loan in 2011 to save the bank from collapsing.
AMCON is now seizing the assets belonging to the three companies used in securing the loan – Silverbird Productions Limited, Silverbird Showtime Limited and Silverbird Galleria Limited.
The properties include those at 133, Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos, Plot No 1161 (Silverbird Galleria), the plaza at Central Area Cadastral Zone, Abuja, and the magnificent structure located at Abonnema Wharf Road and Abali Park in Port Harcourt.
Meanwhile,normal activities resumed at the Silverbird Galleria, Abuja on Thursday afternoon , hours after the premises was sealed off by the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON). But the Silverbird workers were locked out as the company’s building remained under lock and keys. The Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) had earlier in the day, announced a takeover of three of SilverBird Group businesses: Silverbird Galleria Limited, Silverbird Promotions Limited, and Silverbird Showtime Limited. All the companies are co-owned by Mr. Murray-Bruce and his brothers, Guy Murray-Bruce, Michael Murray-Bruce, as well as his son, Jonathan Murray-Bruce. The latest move by AMCON came two months after the agency, established in 2010 to manage delinquent loans of big firms and individuals, appointed Muiz Banire as the Receiver/Manager of the companies, following an alleged failure to meet up loan obligations with Union Bank of Nigeria.
See reactions from Nigerians below of news of the seizure of Silverbird group of companies by AMCON.
Ben Bruce was a Pharisees https://t.co/2qSFCeeHju— Tobiloba (@Blarkboyfly) June 23, 2016
AMCON takes over Senator Ben Bruce’s Silverbird over 11 billion Naira unpaid loan. Anything happens in Naija even “Common Sense” is owing.— I Am Enyene!!! (@ThaVincent) June 23, 2016