independent

Friday 18 April 2014

Michael O'Leary makes his personal taxi firm's accounts private

O'Leary: unlimited company

RYANAIR boss Michael O'Leary has had enough of people checking out the accounts of the firm behind his private taxi service.

The airline chief has made the company unlimited, in a move that frees it from the obligation of having to file publicly available accounts every year with the Companies Office.

Mr O'Leary uses his personal taxi for trips between his home in Mullingar and Dublin Airport, where Ryanair has its head office.

It lets him skip traffic snarls in the city by using bus lanes at any time of the day.

Taxis, bicycles and on-call emergency vehicles are the only other forms of transport allowed to use bus lanes when they are in force.

Mr O'Leary acquired a taxi licence in 2003, sparking outrage in some quarters.

Seamus Brennan, the late transport minister, even tried to take it off him by seeking to close a loophole that enabled others to do what Mr O'Leary was legally doing.

But the multi-millionaire is perfecty entitled to use the taxi, as long as his journeys are metered and there's a separate driver present.

He put the car he had been using for the taxi service – a top end 2007 Mercedes S500L – up for sale in 2011.

Now curious eyes will be prevented from seeing just how the company that provides the service, Tillingdale, is performing.

The most recent set of accounts – for the 12 months to the end of August 2011 – showed the firm made a €41,000 profit, bringing its accumulated profits since 2000 to nearly €583,000.

The company, however, also provides horse breeding services.

Mr O'Leary's wife, Anita, who he married in 2003, is also a director of the firm.

Irish Independent

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