Desmond Drops £8M

He may have more fingers in pies than most people have fingers on their hands but leading U.K. promoter Denis Desmond lost £8 million last year, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.

Last year, Desmond and wife/business partner Caroline had £73 million and were the 138th-richest people in Ireland.

Now, the team with festival interests including Reading, Leeds, V, Isle Of Wight, T In The Park, Latitude, Oxegen and now Electric Picnic is down to £65 million, although it’s still managed to move up the Irish Rich List league table to No. 115.

Desmond, whose close involvement with Live Nation has led to him owning a chunk of the U.K.’s Academy Music Group (AMG), may get £1.6 million back from last year if he successfully sues Prince over a non-appearance at Dublin’s Croke Park last June.

He may also have snapped up some bargains that lead to future profits, particularly when Festival Republic – the U.K. festival promoter he co-owns with LN – picked up Norway’s bankrupt Hove Festival from the official receiver.

Festival Republic also bought the majority share of Ireland’s Electric Picnic from rival promoters Peter Aiken and John Reynolds.

The richest people in the Irish music business are reportedly U2, although the band is said to have lost 14 percent of the £470 million it had a year ago. The act is 12th overall on the Irish Rich List.

Next is “Lord Of The Dance” Michael Flatley, 27th on the overall list, who is estimated to have £246 million (down from £273 million) tucked away somewhere.

Third-richest in the Irish music business and 85th-richest overall is Enya, who bucked the industry trend by adding £4 million to the £80 million fortune she had a year ago.

Fourth, and one place ahead of Desmond and 107th in the national list, are Moya Doherty and John McColgan, who have made £67 million from Riverdance and real estate.