Sunday 19 January 2020

Kenny media company 'in the red' last year

Grainne Cunningham and Laura Noonan

THE country's best-paid broadcaster, Pat Kenny, is not immune to financial woes, the latest accounts filed with the Companies Office show.

The RTE star's media company was "in the red" to the tune of €107,000 at the end of June last year, after he took out a loan totalling close to €300,000. The six-figure hole in the books followed a period when the radio host's salary soared to a record high of €950,000 in 2008, although he took a pay cut last February along with his other colleagues at the station.

Mr Kenny lost 25pc of his salary and then volunteered to take a further 10pc cut, bringing it down to €630,000.

Last night, Mr Kenny declined to comment on his finances, saying: "I never speak about those things".

However, he pointed out that the situation was "historical" and represented his state of affairs a year ago.

"So much has happened since then," he added.

Like most other top broadcasters, including Marian Finucane and Ryan Tubridy, Kenny offers his services to RTE through a holding company. In his case, that company is Pat Kenny Media.

The accounts just filed for the company show a healthy bank balance of €242,194 at the end of June last year. But some €350,094 of that money held was owed to various creditors. The €291,723 bank loan Kenny took out last year accounts for the greater part of that, along with the €46,290 he was due to pay to the taxman. The directors of the firm are Kenny and his wife Kathy, who signed off the latest accounts on April 27.

Those accounts cover a period of huge change in working arrangements for the veteran broadcaster, who switched from the audience-pulling 'Late Late Show' to the current affairs 'Frontline' programme. The books also cover the year after the Kennys settled the 'Battle for Gorse Hill' case with their neighbours, Gerard and Maeve Charlton, over the small plot of land adjoining their Dalkey home.

The eventual fee the Kennys paid for the land was never disclosed, although estimates vary from €1m to €1.5m.

The Charltons had claimed they owned the land while the Kennys said they had established squatter's rights since 1991.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News