Makhlouf’s retort to KBC boss, Ryanair’s culture, and Irish ‘compo culture’ spin

Business Today: the best news, analysis and comment from The Irish Times business desk

Central Bank governor Gabriel Makhlouf responded publicly on Thursday for the first time to the head of KBC Group bemoaning the regulator's ongoing focus on the tracker mortgage scandal, saying he "may regret the fact that we will continue to be annoying". Joe Brennan reports.

Developer Pat Crean's Marlet Property Group has secured planning permission from Dublin City Council to increase the height of the 11-storey office block it is delivering on the site of the former Apollo House to 21 storeys.

In other corporate news, pretax profits at the main Irish unit of JD Sports last year increased by 2 per cent to €12.9 million. Meanwhile there was further good news for the Irish arm of pharma giant Gilead, which reported an almost threefold increase in profits to $145.17 million (€130m).

Laura Slattery reports that RTÉ has decided not to proceed with its attempt to sell the RTÉ Guide title.


Mark Paul's Caveat column argues the insurance industry's 'compo culture' spin is the dodgiest claim of all. Citing official data from the Courts Service, he says the total burden on the insurance industry of personal injury claims has barely risen at all since 2013. "The 'compo culture' emperor is stark blooming naked, and hasn't worn a stitch in years."

In Agenda, Lara Marlowe reports on the trade war brewing between the US and France, while for the interview of the week, Dominic Coyle meets Mayoman Tommy Griffith, who has embraced the green agenda with an innovative approach to dealing with litter courtesy of his rapidly growing business PEL Waste Reduction.

In his column, John FitzGerald warns that, when it comes to tackling climate change, "persuading each of the five million of us living here to eliminate our emissions of greenhouse gases from heating our homes or travelling to work is essential and it is a much bigger political challenge".

Finally, The Irish Times Business People of the Month for November are Meath-based entrepreneurs Noel and Valerie Moran. Founders of payments company Prepaid Financial Services (PFS), the couple sold the business last month in a deal that will give them a payout of up to ¤266 million.

Michael McAleer

Michael McAleer

Michael McAleer is Motoring Editor, Innovation Editor and an Assistant Business Editor at The Irish Times