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The Punt: CNN honours Sugru moldable glue inventor


Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh

Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh

Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh

Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh, the inventor of the Sugru moldable glue technology, has been named by US news network CNN as one of seven female tech superheroes to watch in 2015.

The 35-year-old scientist from Kilkenny invented the Sugru moldable glue while studying art in London and has devoted many years to perfecting it.

Sugru can be used to stick to anything, from glass to wood, and turns into a strong, flexible rubber overnight.

On why Ní Dhulchaointigh's invention matters Shivvy Jervis wrote for CNN: "This self-setting material allows people to 'hack their products' - modifying, fixing, and generally making regular objects better. Added to that, Sugru is waterproof, adhesive, and heat-resistant."

The Punt's many long-suffering teachers of Irish would be spluttering at the thought of the Punt trying to share any insight into the language but here goes; Sugru derives from the word "súgradh" which means "play". Now you know.

You can bank on Willie John

The Punt is €5 richer after the Chartered Accountants Ireland dinner on Thursday night.

Rugby legend Willie John McBride was the after-dinner speaker and one of the attendees was keen for a bet - he'd seen McBride speak before and reckoned that McBride would mention the 1974 Lions tour in the first four minutes of his speech.

However, it was a good 20 minutes before the topic came up.

Another topic that came up in Antrim native McBride's nice speech was his day job in a bank - he played rugby before it was a professional sport.

The rugby legend said he still takes pride in spotting successful projects he loaned money to, when driving around Northern Ireland.

That's what being a bank manager is all about, he said.

McBride told a funny anecdote about one of the characters associated with the Irish rugby team in his era.

The man used to splash holy water on the players before every game. When he got to McBride, an Ulster Protestant, he would pause, before splashing it on anyway and saying it wouldn't do McBride any harm

John Bruton was among the bigshots in attendance, and also there was Independent TD Peter Mathews, who cornered Bruton for a good five minutes after McBride's speech.

Bruton had a scrumptious dessert sitting in front of him and it must have been agony to postpone the eating.

McCarthy steps into Goodbody

The Punt sees that Ruth McCarthy has been appointed a director at Goodbody Stockbrokers.

The appointment is interesting because McCarthy is the daughter of Kerry entrepreneur Brian McCarthy, who founded Fexco, which in turn owns Goodbody.

Company filings show that her appointment was effective from last Tuesday. Ruth McCarthy (32) joins other Fexco executives on the Goodbody directorship list, including Goodbody managing director Roy Barrett; its head of wealth management, Eamonn Glancy; and of course former Tanaiste Dick Spring, who's deputy chairman at Fexco.

Ruth McCarthy is listed as the head of compliance for Bureau de Change at Fexco.

In 2013, Mr McCarthy passed his shareholding in Fexco to his children. Each received €8m worth of shares in the business.

A former assistant bank manager, Mr McCarthy founded Fexco in 1981, initially to service the local tourist market in Kerry.

Meanwhile, there's no sign yet of a replacement for Fexco's group managing director Gavin O'Neill, who was due to step down at the end of December.

Irish Independent