The Best of the Weekend Business Papers 16 August 2020

October 19


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THE 1% PODCAST – Enda McNulty 
Listen here 


We pulled together a recap episode for you this week, featuring short clips from some of the great moments in the podcast’s fourth season. We were fortunate to have incredible leaders from across industries, disciplines, and fields share their stories and perspectives this season – and we wanted to share them with you as we wrap up Season 5 and look ahead to the sixth season.

Here are some of the guests and clips from Season 5 featured in this wrap-up episode:

+ Suzanne Dempsey (Deputy CEO and the Director of Nursing at the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin) speaks openly about the challenges of leading in extraordinary times.

+ Bryan Burnstein (Director of Performance Science for Kitman Labs, formerly Head of Performance Science at Cirque de Soleil) gives an up-close account at what some of the best teams are doing to support their athletes and how to build a high-performance culture.
+ Kingsley Aikins (CEO of The Networking Institute) talks about his life’s work bringing people together regardless of geographical location under the one umbrella of promoting Irish interests.
+ Ade McCormack (Technologist & Author) in this session, we explore the importance of attention in respect to individual performance and the challenges faced in these increasingly distracting times. We also explore the implications of this on organisational performance.
+ Enda McNulty (All Star, leading performance coach and motivational speaker) we deep dive into leadership, team performance, and mental toughness and his work with some of the Irelands leading athletes and organisations.
We’re hard at work planning Season 6 which will kick off in September.




  • The Business Post says that Johnny Ronan has missed a key deadline to build his 23-storey tower at Tara Street
  • The Sunday Independent reports that the value of the state’s holding in Ireland’s banks has slumped by €5.2bn
  • The Sunday Times says the Central Bank has approved a 20% increase in the amount it contributes to employees’ pensions
  • The Financial Times reports that demand for staycations in the UK has rocketed following new quarantine rules
  • The Wall Street Journal says Americans’ shopping surpassed pre-pandemic levels last month







“We were absolutely frozen.”

– Ellen Glynn, the paddle boarder who survived a night at sea with her cousin before being rescued.






Developer Johnny Ronan has missed a key deadline to start building his controversial 23-storey tower at Tara Street in Dublin city centre, according to one of this week’s top stories. Killian Woods reports that missing the deadline means CIE, which originally gave Ronan permission to develop the site, now has the opportunity to back out of the deal altogether.

Ireland should try and attract as many data centres as it can so it can move up the international value chain. That’s according to a story by Peter Dwyer on page two which quotes a leading international business academic Howard Yu. Yu says chasing data centres allows local government to “enlarge the ecosystem” by encouraging further higher value investments down the line. More than 50 data centres are currently operational in Ireland with around 30 more in the pipeline.

Model-turned-businesswoman Pippa O’Connor and her TV presenter husband Brian Ormond are coining it with their online fashion business Poco, according to a story on page three. Rosanna Cooney reports that the business has recorded more than €1m in profits since it launched in 2016.

The Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) is to push ahead with a €1.8bn capital investment plan despite the impact of Covid-19 and also not knowing where the money is going to come from. “We have to invest, but how I finance that, I’m not sure at the moment,” said DAA CEO Dalton Philips.

In a story that will likely run for months to come, publicans have demanded “meaningful” cash supports from the government after being forced to remain closed due to Covid-19. Donal O’Keefe, CEO of the Vintners’ Association, said cash was what his members needed. “We’re not interested in cheap loans and we’re not interested in trading assistances,” he said.

In Brief

  • Adrian Serle, chief executive of Denis O’Brien’s Communicorp, is to leave the company
  • Starling Bank, the UK challenger digital bank, is setting up its European HQ in Ireland
  • Enterprise Ireland made a profit of €49m from selling shares in Irish companies in 2019
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The value of the state’s holding in AIB and Bank of Ireland has slumped by €5.2bn over the past 12 months, according to this week’s top business story. The figures are contained in the half-year update from the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund.
Also on the front of the business pages it’s reported that fast-food chain Domino’s is to expand its supply chain centre in Naas, Co Kildare. Sean Pollack reports that the first phase of the extension will be completed by autumn 2021 and is part of an investment that could be worth up to €8.9m.

Ireland could unlock a massive manufacturing boom involving €45bn of investment by exploiting its offshore wind power on the west coast. That’s according to Airtricity and Mainstream Renewable Power founder Eddie O’Connor who said exploiting our wind assets should be “one of our most important national efforts”.

In Brief
  • Covid-19 has wiped out almost half of the 12m euro-area jobs created since the last recession
  • Nearly a fifth of businesses have cut prices to stimulate demand, according to a new survey


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The Central Bank of Ireland has approved a 20% increase in the amount it contributes to employees’ “gold-plated pensions” according to this week’s top business story. Niall Brady reports that the regulator has upped its staff pension contribution on a bid to bridge a growing deficit in the scheme that had reached more than €600m by the end of last year.

Underscoring the impact of Covid-19 on business activity, new figures show that the number of new company formations in Ireland dropped to its lowest point in five years during the first half of 2020. The figures, compiled by credit risk analysist Crif Vision-net, showed that 9,853 companies were set up in the first six months of 2020 down on the 12,156 over the same period last year.

In the main paper there’s another story about Johnny Ronan’s plans to a build an 88 metre tower at Tara Street in Dublin. Colin Coyle reports that Ronan has dropped plans to put a hotel in the tower and will instead reassign the space as “ultra-premium” offices.

In Brief

· Eamonn Crowley, the new CEO of PTSB, has spent €24,480 buying shares in the bank

The Sunday Times is a digital subscription. We encourage you to support quality journalism and subscribe or buy the physical newspaper. Subscribe here >





The demand for staycations in the UK has rocketed following the introduction of new quarantine rules, according to this week’s top story. The surge in bookings for UK holidays comes after the government said anyone returning from France or the Netherlands would have to self-isolate for 14 days.

The UK economy shrank by more than any other rich country in the second quarter according to new figures released last week. UK GDP shrank 20.4% in the three months to the end of June, the equivalent of an annualised rate of 59.8%. By comparison US and German output declined by around 10% in the same period while Italy lost 12%, France 14% and Spain 19%.

Electric carmaker Tesla has announced the first stock split in its history as a public company. The move is seen a way to make Tesla shares more attractive to small investors as it reduces the price per share and is also a sign of confidence by management in future market gains.


The FT is a digital subscription. We encourage you to support quality journalism and subscribe or buy the physical newspaper. Subscribe here >





The WSJ reports that Americans’ shopping surpassed pre-pandemic levels last month as the US continued to rebound from the impact of Covid-19. Retail sales – reflecting what households spent at service stations, stores, restaurants and online – rose 1.2% in July according to new figures released by the Commerce Department.

The maker of popular game “Fortnite” has “declared war” on Apple for taking a 30% cut of revenues sold through the game played on Apple devices. Epic Games has launched a legal action against Apple saying it “imposes unreasonable restraints and unlawfully maintains a total monopoly” of the distribution of apps used on its devices.

Finally, US unemployment claims fell below one million last week for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic hit. New applications for unemployment benefits dropped to a seasonally adjusted 963,000 for the week ended 8 August as the “deeply wounded” labour market regained some footing.

The WSJ  is a digital subscription. We encourage you to support quality journalism and subscribe or buy the physical newspaper. Subscribe here >



All views are strictly my own brief interpretation of the articles in the various publications and not intended to be comprehensive. 
Please feel free to forward to friends or colleagues and get in touch if you wish to add contacts to the mailing list.
Have a good week. 



Shay Dalton 
Managing Director – Lincoln Recruitment Specialists




T: +353 1 661 0444/



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© 2020 All Rights Reserved – Lincoln Recruitment Specialists

About the Author


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