Business Irish

Thursday 18 October 2018


What car do you drive and do you still have a no-claims bonus?

A Mercedes Diesel but I still have ambitions to drive Formula One. Thankfully, as there's a huge insurance loading on TDs, the no-claimsbonus has been intact for many years now.

What was your first job and salary?

A bell hop in a New York apartment block. As a student the salary was enough to have a good time, so probably not a lot.

At what times do you start and finish work?

I take holidays twice a year. In between times it's work, usually 16 hours a day.

Who would you like to see as Minister for Finance?

Richard Bruton. The Irish taxpayers could be assured that every penny would be wisely spent in their best interest.

Do you conduct any business online?

My children regard me as a computer imbecile but I do use email all the time. I use a Blackberry to keep in touch with the office when I am travelling around the country.

Do you have a will?

Yes. Somebody has to clear my debts when I'm gone.

Apart from the News, what are your favourite TV and radio programmes?

I always try to watch the Sunday Game and the golf majors. The back nine on the last day in Augusta usually makes for great television. On radio, I enjoy listening to Sunday Miscellany.

What type of credit card do you have and do you ever borrow on it?

Mastercard, and thankfully no, I don't. I've never been that desperate.

Are you ever overdrawn or always in credit?

My local bank manager is always very nice, which obviously means they're doing well out of me!

Do you know exactly how much you are worth?

In monetary terms, not a lot, but my wife, Fionnuala, tells me I'm priceless!

Today, would you invest in property, shares, cash or other?

In time. A few extra hours in the day would be wonderful.

What is the worst investment decision you ever made?

Not buying a house in Dublin when I was first elected. I'm afraid I was more interested in a Saab and a good time.

What is your investment tip of the year?

Use time wisely.

Favourite restaurant?

Newport House, Co Mayo, where time stands still.

Where do you holiday?

We like to explore a different place every year but my wife's home place in Kerry is anannual pilgrimage.

Greatest sporting moments?

Two stand out among many: Mick Higgins's 75-yard pointed free kick in the Connaught final in 1972 between Mayo and Sligo at McHale Park, and Christy O'Connor's two-iron to the 18th at the Belfry in the Ryder Cup.

Do you belong to any clubs?

Islandeady Football Club, Castlebar Golf Club.

How did you do in the Leaving Cert?

I honestly don't remember in detail, and it seems so irrelevant now - something students about to sit exams should bear in mind. I did do well enough to get in to St Patrick's teacher training college and then on to UCG after that, which was what I really wanted to do.

Which businessman/woman do you most admire?

To be honest I have a huge regard for any man or woman who takes a risk on starting a business and makes a profit out of it. If they do well, jobs are created and the economy thrives - all because they took a chance on their idea.

What's your business ambition?

To do it well.

How long is left to pay on your mortgage, if any?

Too long to be able to contemplate early retirement.

Is your mortgage rate fixed or variable?


What type of SSIA do you have?


What is your salary?

(a) ?20-?50k;

(b) ?50-?100k;

(c) ?100-?200k;

(d) ?250k+

It's very well documented - b.

What football team do you support?

The red and green - Mayo, and the Irish rugby team.

Which gets more of your time - work or family life?

Work, by a very long shot. Nevertheless I think my family know that they are the most important element of my life.

Who makes the decisions in your house? You or your partner/spouse?

My wife tells me that we make them jointly and I believe her.

Enda Kenny is the leader of Fine Gael

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