Ciarán Hancock’s Business Christmas Quiz

Think you’re all business? Try your hand at this and win some great prizes


So, you think you know your business? Here are 30 questions that will test your knowledge. Good luck with the answers and Happy Christmas to you all. Ciarán Hancock

1. David Duffy left AIB this year. Which bank is he now leading towards an IPO?

2. Which global tech CEO was honoured by Trinity College Dublin’s Philosophical Society this year?

3. On which Caribbean island was well-known Irish businessman Sir Anthony O’Reilly declared bankrupt in November?

4. Two Dublin department stores changed hands this year, one in controversial circumstances. Who are the new owners of both stores?

5. Which company founded by two Irish brothers achieved a $5 billion valuation this year?

6. Which Irish company became the first on the Iseq to pass the €100-a-share mark?

7. Who won the EY Entrepreneur of the Year award for 2015?

8. How much did the State net from the IPO in April of Permanent TSB, which reduced the Government’s holding in the bank to 75 per cent?

9. Who was the final witness grilled by the Oireachtas Banking Inquiry in September?

10. What have the Westin hotel in Dublin, TV3, and Humewood Castle all got in common?

11. How much did IAG pay to acquire Aer Lingus this year?

12. What is the name of the cider launched by Heineken this year to challenge the hegemony of C&C’s Bulmers in the Irish market?

13. Which portfolio sale got Nama into hot water this year in Northern Ireland?

14. Sit On My Turf - is the anagram of the CEO of an Iseq listed company . Who is it?

15. According to JP Morgan, what is Apple’s potential back tax liability in Ireland if the European Commission rules against it tax arrangements here in the ongoing state aid inquiry? Is it about $1.9 billion, $19 billion or $119 billion?

16. Identify those pictured. One led a successful stock market IPO; another has been appointed to a high-profile role with an Irish bank; another stepped down recently as a director with an Irish listed company; while the other now leads one of Ireland’s biggest media and communications groups.

17. Under what company name did Google reorganise its operations this year?

18. Who is the head of IDA Ireland?

19. Which ferry company pulled off the Dún Laoghaire to Holyhead route this year?

20. Why was Richard Branson in the business headlines here this year?

21. Which Kerry-based company won the top technology gong at the National Agribusiness Awards in December for a product known as the “iPad for cows”?

22. What price range had Denis O’Brien set in for the flotation of Digicel shares in New York before eventually pulling the plug on the IPO?

23. Which overseas group helped Cork-based developer Michael O’Flynn to refinance his borrowings and regain control of much of his property group?

24. As per data from the National Treasury Management Agency, what was the size of Ireland’s national debt at end-June 2015?

25. HTC announced its Vive virtual reality headset this year in collaboration with which company?

26. Jack Dorsey was named Twitter’s permanent chief executive this year. Which other company is he leading?

27. What was former Irish Farmers’ Association boss Pat Smith’s “agreed” severance package?

28. What is the new name of Siteserv, the Denis O’Brien-owned industrial services company that has a lucrative contract to fit Irish Water meters?

29. Which former Irish banker was judge Frank Bailey talking about when he described him as a “quick thinker, adept in testimony intended to deflect, misdirect, avoid, fabricate”?

30. Who acquired Nama’s loans connected with the Dundrum Towncentre?

The prizes and how to enter

This year the winner will receive a pair of flights from Dublin to London, courtesy of Irish airline CityJet along with a two-night stay for two people in a DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in central London, courtesy of Dublin-based Amaris Hospitality.

The runner-up will receive six bottles of wine, courtesy of Virgin Media, the leading digital TV, broadband and phone provider in Ireland.

There is also a participants’ prize of a 12-month premium digital subscription to The Irish Times.

This will be awarded to the first name out of the hat for all completed entries. So there’s every incentive just to enter the competition.

Terms and conditions for the flights and the accommodation will be notified to the winner.

Entries should be sent for my attention to: The Irish Times, 24 Tara Street, Dublin 2 or by email to

Entries must be received by the close of business on Monday January 4th.

The winner will be announced the following week.