There are some among us who have more money in the bank than most could ever dream of. These charmed individuals are impossibly wealthy, with copious zeros at their disposal.
Some have been born to riches; others have gone from nothing to so much money they couldn’t spend it in a lifetime. We look at Northern Ireland’s rich list: who’s on it, how they got there, and how they’re spending it.
1. Lady Ballyedmond and family
Some people earn their wealth by becoming one of the world’s highest-paid athletes; others by claiming some of the biggest jackpots won. In 2019, for example, one lucky individual secured a whopping 209 million euros, while another won a similarly astounding 190 million euros.
These sums, won on the Super-Enalotto and EuroMillions respectively, are clearly life-changing, yet they still don’t compare with the wealth of Northern Ireland’s leading lady. The 71-year-old solicitor inherited her husband’s veterinary pharmaceutical empire in 2014.
While Lady Ballyedmond and her family may not have personally built their fortune, they have done an exceptional job of maintaining it, with profits rising by £10 million in the space of a year. This places their current wealth at an exceptional £1.6 billion.
2. Martin Naughton
Martin Naughton is Northern Ireland’s only other billionaire, with a fortune amounting to £1.2 billion. The industrialist is now aged 82 but looks no nearer to retiring. A notable philanthropist, he’s responsible for creating domestic appliances giant Glen Dimplex.
Based in Dublin, Naughton hasn’t only concentrated his considerable talents on business. He was presented with the Oslo Business for Peace award in 2018 for his efforts in mediation. Having made a major contribution, Naughton put his money to good use and made a real and enduring difference.
3. Kevin Lagan
In third place is Kevin Lagan, a construction tycoon whose wealth continues to grow. With a personal fortune of £440 million, Lagan is primarily involved in homebuilding. He’s a man who’s had his fingers in many pies over the years, including cement, quarrying, and aggregates. He recently sold the latter concern for a cool £455 million, putting him on this list for the first time.
4. Mark Burnett and Roma Downey
Just below Kevin Laggan is this duo, whose combined wealth equates to around £390 million. The two are the brains behind The Apprentice, which is how they earned their fortunes. TV producers by trade, they sold their idea around the world, including to the US, where Donald Trump starred in the American version of the show.
5. Paul and Jeremy Easkin
Another pair come in fifth place: Paul and Jeremy Easkin. The brothers are worth around £330 million, after seeing their profits soar by around £10 million in the last year alone. They own and run a medical firm in County Down.
When it comes to Northern Ireland’s wealthiest players, it’s true that the rich are only getting richer. With the 10 wealthiest people worth over £5 billion, these lucky individuals have more money than the average person could hope to see in a lifetime. Oh well, as the old saying goes, money isn’t everything!