'Airports are big, fat, dumb b****rds': The standout Irish business quotes of the year

Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary leads the way when it comes to pithy one-liners.

By Paul O'Donoghue Reporter, Fora

AS USUAL, THE man himself kicks it off. The statement in the headline was of course uttered by Michael O’Leary, and a list of 2017′s best Irish business quotes could be completely populated with the Ryanair boss’s one-liners.

However, that would mean missing out on some of the year’s most insightful, emotional or just downright bizarre statements.

Here we’ve listed some of the standout quotes from the Irish business year that was.

January 12: “My job is not to keep everybody happy. My job is to reward those customers that actually deliver margin.”

Aer Lingus chief executive Stephen Kavanagh hits back at customers who slammed changes to the airline’s frequent-flyer programme.

90424422_90424422 Stephen Kavanagh
Source: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

February 1: ”The chance of recovering €74 billion on these loans was lost in the financial crisis.”

Former Finance Minister Michael Noonan says that there was no chance that Nama would ever have been able to recover the full value of the loans it took control of during the recession.

3/11/2011. Michael Noonan at IIEA Conferences Michael Noonan
Source: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie

March 19: “There are the select few who say, ‘Women? No, we don’t invest in women’. The investment boards are made up of quite a set class of older, white, gentlemen.”

Rhona Togher, the co-founder of Restored Hearing, describes how she isn’t taken seriously by some potential investors because she is a young woman.

rhona togher restored hearing Rhona Togher
Source: Youtube

May 23: “There was a real risk of an unfair trial. The jury must be directed to acquit the accused.”

Judge John Aylmer rules that the case against Sean FitzPatrick cannot proceed as the former Anglo-Irish Bank boss could not be guaranteed a fair trial.

After the trial, the state’s white-collar crime watchdog, the ODCE, came under fierce scrutiny due to a litany of mistakes it made on the FitzPatrick case including shredding documents and coaching witnesses.

File Photo The government announcing a new suite of measures against white collar crime. The measures aim at enhancing corporate governance, increasing transparency and strengthening Ireland's response to white collar crime. End. Sean FitzPatrick
Source: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

June 26: “(Airports are) big, fat, dumb bastards. We should all be working together to screw the airports because the airports have been screwing us probably since Wilbur and Orville (Wright) first flew.”

Michael O’Leary takes aim at airports as he lays out his vision for the future of air travel.

18/9/2017 Ryanair Press Conferences Michael O'Leary
Source: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

August 2: “It’s a reminder that you get old quickly. When you talk to people who are old, some wish they had enjoyed themselves more, but not many wish they had wasted more time.”

Stripe co-founder Patrick Collison explains why he has a clock on the wall of his office counting down how long he has left to live.

patrick collison youtube Patrick Collison
Source: Youtube

October 14: “Fans are supportive of you, they’ll forgive the occasional mistake as long as you put it right.”

AIB’s head of retail transformation Mark Gould explains how the bailed-out bank wants to change its public image.

Source: Andrew Busby/Twitter

October 20: “Our housing crisis is completely normal. Every country in Europe has equivalent issues in terms of affordability.”

Conor Skehan, the outgoing chair of the Housing Agency, explains why he thinks Irish people and the media overstate the country’s housing problems.

conor skehan 1 Conor Skehan
Source: Youtube

October 28: “We will rent a two-bed for €2,400 a month. We’ve analysed how much money we will make off that, and (it will be) nothing.”

Kevin Nowlan, the head of one of Ireland’s biggest property companies, says it’s tough to make money developing residential housing in Ireland.

kevin nowlan hibernia 3 Kevin Nowlan
Source: Youtube

November 12: “I don’t mention the cost of living, that’s something that really puts people off.”

Tom Shaw, an engineer at Irish software firm Demonware, doesn’t tell prospective hires about high prices when they’re considering relocating to Dublin.

dublin sunrise credit flickr Miguel Mendez Dublin city
Source: Flickr/Miguel Mendez:

December 1: “(Ireland is a) fiscal paradise. It’s a very ugly picture of a set of rules designed to benefit corporations at the expense of ordinary citizens.”

Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz tells the Irish Times that Ireland’s tax deals with big companies like Apple help fuel global wealth inequality.

Joseph Stiglitz Hearing - Paris Joseph Stiglitz
Source: Lemouton Stephane/PA Images

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