Wednesday 26 July 2017

Ireland's biggest beef baron Goodman (77) is planning to tighten his control of the meat market with the proposed acquisition of 50pc of rival Slaney Foods, owned by the Allen family. This would give him a quarter of the market.

Goodman already kills 1m cows and 1m sheep every year. His extremely private ABP is thought to have revenues of €3bn, but the industry has wafer-thin margins. ABP is made up of a warren of offshore companies, making its finances difficult to gauge.

One company - Parlesse - is said to have made profits of €280m between 2010 and March 2013. The controversial Louth-based beef baron is one of Ireland's great comeback stories. Badly overextended when a big cheque didn't arrive in 1990 as Saddam Hussein's Iraq defaulted after UN sanctions were imposed, Goodman's beef business imploded.

He spent the best part of the following decade trying to win it back from borrowers. There was also a humungous State write-off of debts. Having done that, he expanded in a big way, becoming one of the largest private players in Europe. His son Mark is increasingly an important part of the beef operations.

Goodman is also a big property investor, with son Laurence Jr, heavily involved in that side of the business. He pulled off one of the most audacious deals of the recession, buying the iconic Bank of Ireland HQ on Baggot Street for €40m in 2012 - four years after developers had bought it for €180m. He has splurged up to €100m doing it up, and it will attract some of the highest rents in the city.

There are a number of other office blocks, including Setanta House, which serves as an office for the Revenue. An ambitious shopping centre plan for Newry was hit by the downturn.

The Bentley-driving businessman is also a sizeable investor in the health sector, owning valuable stakes in the Blackrock Clinic, Galway Clinic and Hermitage as well as the €500m-valued Mater Private.

He bought a new €40m

Dassault Falcon 7X private jet in 2013.

Online Editors

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