Temple Bar Management Team

Michael R Cronin – Chairman

Michael R Cronin has been involved in the property industry since 1973, when he worked as Chief Accountant with a Residential, Commercial and Industrial Development company in Bromley Kent, a subsidiary of First National Finance Corporation, one of the largest “secondary” banks which were active in the early 1970’s.  After spells with Allsops and Chestertons residential management departments, in 1978 he was appointed Financial Controller with a UK subsidiary of the US conglomerate Gulf & Western when it undertook the first big “break-up” of a residential apartment block in London at Park West, Marble Arch.  This project involved the complete interior and exterior refurbishment of a tenanted block of 542 units, of which approximately 250 were sold, mostly to overseas investors, during what was seen as a revolutionary marketing campaign that commenced in September 1979.
In late 1980, together with a Chartered Surveyor, at the request of a group of Chinese investors based in Malaysia and Hong Kong he set up a property and project management company in London, Marble Arch Management, and during the 1980’s carried out various residential projects in London’s West End.  A notable achievement during that time was the successful negotiation with the London Borough of Fulham to obtain planning permission for the erection of an apartment block at one end of the Fulham Football Club stadium, a project which unfortunately never came to fruition due to the state of the property market at that time.  However, it did enable the then owner of the club to sell on at an enormous profit.  In the mid-1980’s Marble Arch Management operated a Serviced Office complex in Gloucester Place, London W1, a business concept that was unique at the time, and which grew enormously in popularity in subsequent years.

In 1990 MRC formed Temple Bar Management in Dublin initially to manage some residential and commercial investments on behalf of UK and Swedish investors.  The Swedish connection led to an introduction to Catella AB, one of the largest property advisory companies in Sweden, and this connection has lasted to the present day.  When Catella established a London office in 1993, MRC was asked to become a member of the local Board with responsibility for accounting and administration.  Coupled with this, MRC was involved with the management of the UK investment portfolio of Inter IKEA Holdings SA, the investment arm of the IKEA family, as Financial Controller of the UK property holding companies.  Apart from the property management functions, the work involved the preparation of corporate accounts for consolidation into the accounts of the parent companies in Belgium, Holland and Denmark.  Inter IKEA built up a significant commercial investment portfolio in the early 1990’s and this was expanded to include a couple of retail parks in the late 1990’s.  The flagship property was a 20,000 sq m office block in central Manchester, Sunlight House, which was acquired in a state of considerable disrepair, and on which a huge programme of refurbishment, both internal and external, was carried out.  TBM was centrally involved in the selection and supervision of the professional team that planned and oversaw the programme of refurbishment.

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