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Liquidator appointed to Dublin pharma company backed by Ryanair co-founder

Declan Ryan was a supporter of Merrion Pharma, which was looking to make medicines easier for patients to take.

A LIQUIDATOR HAS just been appointed to a pharmaceuticals company that was backed by Ryanair co-founder Declan Ryan.

According to a filing in the Companies Registration Office, a liquidator was appointed to Merrion Pharmaceuticals Ireland and Merrion Pharmaceuticals Holdings last week.

Dublin-based Merrion was originally focused on developing oral forms, such as tablets or capsules, of drugs that have suboptimal absorption, many of which can only be given by injection.

In the months leading to its liquidation, the company had been looking to reset itself as an investment vehicle and decided to wind up its operations.

Ryan – best known for co-founding low-cost Irish airline Ryanair with his father Tony Ryan - was a steady supporter of the company.

He held several senior positions at the airline, including CEO, and is now involved in several different ventures through his investment vehicle, Irelandia Aviation. Irelandia loaned about $5 million to Merrion to keep the company afloat.

No deal

Set up in 2003, in 2013 Merrion sold most of its assets, which mostly comprised of licensing arrangements for technology to help develop a pill to treat diabetes, to Danish company Novo Nordisk for $3 million.

After selling its assets, Merrion said it would pivot and become an investment vehicle. However, after hunting around for a bargain, the Merrion board said in August that it could not find a deal good enough to recommend to shareholders.

antibiotics! samantha celera Merrion Pharma was trying to make taking medicines easier samantha celera

The company was listed as an investment firm on Dublin’s junior stock exchange, the ESM. As an investment company, it was required to make an investment by December 2016 or its shares would have been suspended.

In August the board said it completed a declaration of solvency for the Company which indicated that about €4.5 million would be available to its shareholders from the liquidation.

Returning money

It did add that the final net proceeds available for distribution “may be subject to change once the proposed liquidation of the company has been completed to the satisfaction of its appointed liquidator”.

The actual date and amount of the distributions will be determined by the liquidator.”

Merrion held an emergency general meeting in September, at which shareholders voted to liquidate the company while Merrion chief executive John Fox announced his intention to resign.

Although Merrion has been liquidated, Ryan still has plenty of other investments to keep him busy. He recently told Argentine newspaper La Nacion that Irelandia hopes to start a new airline in Argentina in 2017.

Written by Paul O’Donoghue and posted on

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