O’Leary must deal with the downside

The Ryanair boss has just €97 million to show for his costly stake building in Aer Lingus, while rising fuel costs have left him with another massive headaches

6th June, 2009

Employing a chief executive with strong opinions can be costly.

Ryanair shareholders learned this the hard way last week, as two major misjudgments by chief executive Michael O’Leary gobbled up the airline’s bottom line and resulted in its first full year pre-tax loss since going public in 1997.

The bill for O’Leary’s Aer Lingus takeover adventure broke through the €300million barrier, thanks to a €222 million write-off in the year to March...

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