Annual rich list shows Ireland now has six billionaires

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Sunday, April 3, 2005 The annual Sunday Times Rich List published today showed that Ireland now has six euro billionaires, up from four last year. The combined wealth of Irelands 250 wealthiest is €42.3bn.

Topping the list was the new entrant Hilary Weston with a fortune estimated at over €7.2bn. Weston was excluded in previous lists because the majority of her wealth was made abroad, however a rule change this year allowed the Dublin born model to enter in first place. Mrs Weston, 63, grew up in Ireland and built her modeling career there before becoming wed to Galen Weston, heir to his grandfathers multi-billion euro retailing fortune in Canada. The couple permanently moved to Canada in 1983 after a kidnap attempt by the IRA.

The top six on the list were as follows:

  1. Hilary Weston and family; €7.286bn - Retailing
  2. Sir Tony O'Reilly; €1.897bn - Food, media and inheritance
  3. John Dorrance; €1.857bn - Inheritance
  4. Dermot Desmond; €1.239bn - Finance
  5. Sean Quinn; €1.157bn - Quarries, hotels, insurance and industry
  6. Tony Ryan; €1.114bn - Airline

The iconic rock group U2 placed 10th with a combined fortune of €629m.


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