Business Irish

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Ireland's Rich List: 51-60

Published 31/03/2010 | 16:15

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51. STAFFORD FAMILY

€ 180M MERCHANT PRINCES

Wexford's merchant prince dynasty have been continuously at the forefront of Irish business longer than almost any other family group. Starting as shipping and coal distributors, the family business (now headed by Mark Stafford) has diversified into retail through the purchase of Lifestyle Sports.

There are also property assets. Shareholders’ funds topped €101m last year with turnover soaring to €466m.

Profits however were badly squeezed and net debt trebled to €20.3m.

52. THE MAUGHANS

€ 180M INVESTORS

Shrewsbury Road residents Gemma and Michael Maughan have one of the largest private stock portfolios in the country, owning shares in a variety of Irish and international blue chips, ranging from Microsoft, Wal-Mart and Tesco to Grafton and DCC. They also had a stake in Channel 6 television before it was bought by TV3.

Their Convest company owns Peugeot and Honda distributor Gowan Group, which numbered former Bank of Ireland boss Brian Goggin among its board members. The motor sector has been absolutely obliterated in the last two years, with Gowan reporting losses of almost €51m last year. But the Maughans also have interests in home appliance distribution, holding the rights for Dyson, Aga Ariston and Neff among other brands. The group also owns Senator Windows.

The family are renowned art collectors, owning a number of works by modern Irish artists such as Louis le Brocquy and Sean Scully. Their Convest company has paid hefty dividends over the years.

53. CATHAL RYAN'S FAMILY

€ 168M AVIATION

Ryanair heir Cathal Ryan died in 2007 just three months after his father, the great Irish entrepreneur Tony Ryan. He left an estate worth €249m according to his will.

Ryan, one of Ryanair's first pilots and an accomplished horse breeder, left €35m to charity, including a bequest for a theatre in Maynooth University. After other dispersals and the taxman, Ryan's family could net about €168m.

54. JOHN KING

€ 165M PHARMACEUTICALS

Dr John King grossed close to €185m from the sale of his stake in Allen McClay's pharma business Galen. He is president of chamber music ensemble Camerata Ireland, with luminaries such as former Bank of Ireland deputy governor George Magan, Randox zillionaire Peter Fitzgerald and United Drug chairman Ronnie Kells.

55. JOSEPH BRENNAN

€ 165M FOOD

Apart from the eponymous bakery, the extended Brennan family, which also includes Dockland Development Agency chairwoman Niamh Brennan, also own swathes of property in the UK and Ireland as well as a major share portfolio. However the property assets will have dropped in value.

56. ROMA DOWNEY

€ 163M ENTERTAINMENT

Derry-born actress Roma Downey starred in the enormously successful but truly awful TV series ‘Touched By An Angel’ back in the 1980s. But there’s more to the colossal fortune than that.

She married former British paratrooper Mark Burnett — and he developed the Midas touch for reality TV, developing shows such as ‘The Apprentice’ and ‘Survivor’. His Hollywood-based Mark Burnett Productions was linked with a $500m buyout in 2007.

This valuation may be much too high. We peg the company at closer to €145m.

The Malibu properties and previous earnings would easily add another €18m

57. LOCHLANN QUINN

€ 162M MANUFACTURING

Former AIB chairman Lochlann Quinn sold his stake in electrical heater manufacturer Glen Dimplex to Martin Naughton some years before becoming chairman of ESB.

Apart from stakes in the Merrion Hotel and in the Chateau Fieuzal vineyard in Bordeaux, Quinn has a large exposure to the Irish property sector through his involvement in the controversial €412m Irish Glass Bottle site, as well as through his stake in Johnny Morrissey’s' Capital D.

58. HUGH MACKEOWN

€ 160M RETAIL

Musgrave hiked its dividend last year, paying €20.2m to its shareholders including 67-year-old Hugh MacKeown, who chairs the Supervalu and Centra company. The company had sales of €4.85bn in 2008 and MacKeown is one of the largest shareholders in the 116-year-old business.

His €125m stake is held offshore but he also owns other assets.

59. GERRY O'HARE

€ 160M BUSINESS

Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern joined the board of Gerard O'Hare's property development firm Parker Green International just as the property sector imploded. And we thought Bertie's timing was legendary.

But O'Hare still has plenty of assets that continue to perform, including the Quays Shopping Centre in Newry and retail and commercials properties in the UK, Eastern Europe and a €70m shopping centre in Connecticut. In an interview, the 52-yearold O'Hare said he owed about €200m to Anglo Irish Bank but that his business was performing well, despite the downturn.

Planners have given the green light to his planned €300m development beside the Waterford Crystal site in Waterford, although financing may be tricky.

During the boom times he bid €575m for the Pavilion Shopping Centre in Swords, which was bought by Dundrum Shopping Centre owner Joe O'Reilly, whose loans are now bound for Nama.

60. FEARGAL QUINN

€ 156M RETAIL

Quinn sold Superquinn to property developers at just the right moment, bagging over €350m, which he split with his five children. A large chunk of the money was invested in multi-billion dollar private equity deals such as the $25bn HCA and $4.5bn Hertz buyouts, through Domhnal Slattery's Claret Capital, in which it now owns a 25 per cent stake. Quinn's children also provided costly private loans to property developers, with mixed results.

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