What Denis does next: A downsizing tycoon at a crossroads

As Denis O’Brien’s Digicel sells its Pacific interests in a $1.6 billion deal, Matt Cooper assesses the apparent contraction of the O’Brien empire, and looks at what the future may hold for the 63-year-old billionaire

Denis O’Brien has sold off a number of prize assets from his business empire in recent times. Picture: Getty

Denis O’Brien appears to be in retrenchment mode. Once primarily a buyer and a builder, he now seems to be a seller and a downsizer as his business empire contracts.

He remains a significant force in Irish and international business because he still owns so much, but he could be seen as a fading one. We don’t know his personal motivations and ambitions, and he may surprise us yet with major acquisitions. However, a scaling ...