| 7°C Dublin

Gaybo's profits jump past half million mark

Ireland's most celebrated broadcaster, Gay Byrne last year recorded an increase in accumulated profits which jumped past the €500,000 mark.

The filings, lodged by Gabbro Ltd with the Companies Office, show that even in his 80th year and in semi-retirement, 'Gaybo' is running a vibrant media business through his work with RTE.

The new accounts show that profits at the firm in the 12 months to the end of April 30 jumped by €87,591 going from €414,767 to €502,358.


Byrne returns to the airwaves tomorrow on RTE Lyric FM with Sunday with Gay Byrne.

This follows the ninth series of his successful Meaning of Life TV series, broadcast on RTE over the summer that included guests such as Taoiseach Enda Kenny and sports pundit Eamon Dunphy.

The new accounts figures show that the rate of increase in profit at the firm was higher than the combined profit of €86,750 for the two-year period of 2011 and 2012.

The accounts show that last year, the cash pile at the firm dropped from €443,343 to €360,816.

However, the fortunes of the firm were improved with the value of the company's fixed assets increasing from €2,222 to €153,921 following an addition of €150,000 to the value of the firm's assets.

Byrne presented the world's longest running chat show, the Late Late Show for 37 years before stepping down in 1999 at the end age of 65.

Byrne's firm passing the €500,000 mark is a far cry from the broadcaster's financial position in the 1980s.

In 1987 the the Dubliner had to rebuild his finances after learning that his life's savings entrusted to his friend and accountant, the late Russell Murphy had disappeared.

And the grandfather (80) received a second jolt to his finances during the recession when he recorded losses on his shares and investments.

However, in a recent interview, Byrne denied that he's still working at 80 because he needs the money but that he was able to pick and choose the jobs that he enjoys the most.

He said: "No, there's no pressure. I'm very lucky. I think I'm okay, touch wood. I'm doing various things at the moment because I want to do them."

Byrne - who recently stepped down as chairman of the Road Safety Authority (RSA) explained: "I just wanted a bit more time to myself. I'm very lucky that RTE are very indulgent with me and I'm half afraid that if I give up everything the brain will shut down and I'll go ga-ga like everybody else."


The filings for Gabbro Ltd - signed off by Gay and his wife, Kathleen - show that the firm's total shareholder funds stood at €513,190.

The equity in the firm compares favourably to the shareholder funds at the media firms of two of Ireland's other best paid broadcasters, former and current Late Late Show hosts, Pat Kenny and Ryan Tubridy.

Latest accounts for Kenny's firm show that shareholder funds stood at €458,059 while equity at Tubridy's media company stood at €254,151.