O’Connell’s firm grows its cash pile to more than €1m

The cash pile at the firm owned by rugby star Paul O’Connell increased last year by 19% to top over €1m.

According to accounts just lodged with the Companies’ Office by O’Connell’s Nellcon Ltd, cash at the firm grew by €162,679 from €850,211 to €1.012m in the 12 months to the end of April last year.

Its accumulated profits stood at €975,310 — an increase of €122,955 on the €852,355 recorded the previous year.

O’Connell, now aged 33, has been a talisman for Munster and Ireland over the past decade, captaining Munster to their second Heineken cup win in 2008.

Last year, the Limerick man — capped 85 times by Ireland — guaranteed his present level of basic income when he signed a new Ireland international rugby contract which will see him play until 2014.

He is currently on the sidelines following a back operation and is aiming for an April return to provide a boost to Munster’s Heineken Cup challenge and put him in contention for a place in the Lions’ summer tour of Australia.

He has benefited from his professional playing career coinciding with a boom in the finances and popularity of rugby here.

Between 2001 and 2011 revenues at the IRFU, which controls 80% of the finances of Irish rugby, more than trebled from €21.6m to €69.2m.

At the end of his playing career, O’Connell — like other key sportsmen who end their playing careers in Ireland — will be able to claim back 40% of the tax he paid over a 10-year period under a government scheme introduced in 2002.

The figures for Nellcon Ltd show the value of its investments declined by more than €30,000 to €5,000 following O’Connell’s decision to dispose of €30,000 of the investments during the year.

O’Connell set up Nellcon Ltd in 2005 and the firm’s net assets were valued at €975,410 at the end of April.

O’Connell captained the British and Irish Lions on the 2009 tour to South Africa and last year stepped down as Munster captain to concentrate on his own game.

In an interview after signing the contract extension, O’Connell did not rule out another contract down the line.

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