A credit agency confirmed rumours that Viennese contractor Günter Kerbler, who owns a 30% stake in the failed company, was negotiating with administrators to take over the business.

GriffnerHaus was founded 30 years ago and operates in Germany, Switzerland, Italy and France with headquarters in Griffen in Austria. Coillte sold its stake in Griffner Coillte in 2007, four years into a joint manufacturing venture in Ireland. A 80,000ft2 leasehold factory was vacated and 32 people lost their jobs.

Griffner cited "grave management errors" and the economic crisis as the main reasons for the present problems. The operational management was dismissed in October and potential investors have spurned all attempts to put the company back on its feet.

The outcome of the bankruptcy remains unclear for house owners who together have already paid €2m for their homes and for the owners of 40 homes still under construction. They are being treated as normal creditors and a credit agency spokesperson said the question exists as to who would complete the work should the company cease to exist.