JP McManus and family
Gambling, Investment
Rank 2017
Based in Geneva, where he plays the world’s markets from his dealing room, former bookie turned gambler McManus, 65 on Friday, has extensive investments offshore. Many are with John Magnier and Dermot Desmond (both qv), including 20% of €654m Barchester Healthcare and a third of the €467m Sandy Lane hotel in Barbados, next to which he has built a palatial holiday home. With Magnier and Aidan Brooks (qv) via Sloane Capital, he has built a portfolio that includes property in London and New York and shops in Los Angeles. It is worth €1bn before extensive borrowing. He made €175m profit on the €1bn sale in December of Vendôme Saint-Honoré, a block of buildings beside the Ritz in Paris, to Norway’s sovereign wealth fund. Family trusts of McManus, operating via the offshore Elpida Group, have since 2007 built up a 23% stake worth €270m in Mitchells & Butlers, owner of the O’Neill’s and other pub chains. He has made €235m over the past few years from investments in Manchester United, Next Generation and dividends from Barchester, and also has extensive investment assets from playing world bond and currency markets, worth €95m. The family’s Liberties Strategic Services has reportedly bought 4.9% of the fast-growing Indian bank Tamilnad Mercantile. In February he lost a case against the US treasury for the return of $5.2m withheld from the $17.4m he won playing backgammon against US private equity billionaire Alec E Goves over three days in 2012. McManus has 93 horses, including some at his studs in Newmarket and in his native Limerick where he owns one of the country’s largest houses, a €17m nine-bedroom mansion. His family paid €13m for a property in south Dublin where his wife Noreen is developing a 24,000 sq ft complex of a main house and three adjoining for guests or staff. We deduct the €136m he has donated since 2001 to charitable causes, mainly in the Mid-West, via his benevolent fund, charitable trust and all-Ireland scholarship scheme. He has helped raise a further €100m via pro-am golf tournaments featuring his friend Tiger Woods. The latest will be staged in 2018 when a €50m upgrade of his €30m Adare Manor hotel in Limerick is completed.