He might be best known to you generally from Rita O’Reilly’s Prime Time special in December 2010 when Cork developer Michael O’Flynn was secretly filmed arising from the grounds of his home in an Agusta Westland helicopter on his way to Down Royal to watch his racehorse compete for the laurels. But unlike some others in that programme, Michael’s loans, which had been acquired by NAMA, are understood to be performing. Today he is named by the Independent as the third NAMA developer paid €200,000 a year – the other two are understood to be Ballymore’s Sean Mulryan and Dundrum Shopping Centre’s Joe O’Reilly; the full range of NAMA salaries is set out here. Remember that NAMA developers can earn income from other sources and may be working on profit-sharing arrangements which can generate millions.
Michael might be best known for developing the Elysian Tower in Cork – at 71 metres, the tallest building in the Republic of Ireland. Recently Michael placed three buildings with combined asking prices of €100m on the market in London and NAMA is understood to be supporting the development of O’Flynn Construction’s Ballincollig Shopping Centre. Michael is a mover and shaker and is understood to be behind Property Industry Ireland which I see was recently described as an IBEC-led group representing engineers and surveyors, but there’s a fair smattering of developers there also. Michael was a contributor to “A Blueprint for Ireland” in 2010 along with Denis O’Brien and others.
Michael is also suing junior minister for Europe, Lucinda Creighton after comments made by the minister at the McGill Summer School and subsequently on radio and in the press. The comments followed news that Michael had attended a fund-raising Fine Gael golf tournament at the K Club in Kildare in 2010. The case is finally set to be heard this week by Mr Justice Eamon de Valera. Minister Creighton denies the accusation of defamation.