Veteran businessman Dr Michael Smurfit has completed the sale of the K Club golf resort to nursing homes operator Michael Fetherston, in a deal believed to be worth between €65-€70 million.
Dr Smurfit, former chairman of the Smurfit Kappa packaging group, said it was the ‘end of an era, as he handed over formal control of the five-star hotel and two golf courses to Mr Fetherston, who operates TLC nursing homes group.
Dr Smurfit said: “The completion of the sale of the K Club represents the end of an era for me and my family. I would once again like to extend my sincere gratitude to the K Club team and its members for their loyalty and support over many years.”
Dr Smurfit took full control of the K Club in 2011 when he bought out the stake owned by developer Gerry Gannon. The two men had bought the resort on 2005 for €97 million.
The K Club has struggled to generate a financial return, however, with accounts for Bishopscourt Investments, the company that held the asset, showing sales at the resort slipped to €17.5 million in 2018, representing a loss for the year of €3.7 million.
The resort was put up for sale in 2018 at a guide price of €80 million, with the sale of the venue to Mr Fetherston being announced just two months ago, ahead of this week’s final completion. The new owner, who is understood to be in the process of selling the TLC Group to a French company for €150m, has yet to announce plans for the future of the K Club, which held the Ryder Cup in 2006.