Sunday 17 December 2017

Martin Naughton (76) is Ireland's most successful home-grown industrialist, who managed to build up the world's biggest manufacturer of home and commercial heating appliances from a base at Dunleer, a Louth village with little more than 5,000 residents.

Glen Dimplex makes most of the heaters and toasters in the world, through brands such as Morphy Richards, Stoves and Belling. Glen Dimplex is an unlimited company and does not have to reveal its finances.

However, it appears as if the wobbly Chinese economy may have had some impact. Glen Electric, a UK subsidiary which is thought to account for close to half the business, saw its revenues crimped by 9.5pc to €1.045bn. Profits dropped 39pc to €56.7m.

Naughton also has sizeable interests outside of Glen Dimplex including a stake in the Merrion Hotel and Ireland's top restaurant Patrick Guilbauds.

Naughton teamed up with Davy Hickey Property to move into property development last year, after the group raised €20m and bought a site in Citywest.

He also cashed in some of his more mature property assets, offloading two office blocks in the IFSC for a combined €90m over the last year. Naughton, who lives on a 200-acre estate at Stackallen House, has also invested in a number of domestic Irish companies, ranging from wind energy to watercoolers and telecoms.

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