Paul Coulson and family
Rank 2017

Ardagh, the Luxembourg-based metal and glass packaging group in which Dubliner Coulson, 65, has a 39% stake, is planning a float that will value it at as much as €5bn. Trinity College business graduate Coulson, known as “the Cooler”, took over the running of Ardagh Glass in 1998. The flotation in New York aims to raise €250m for a 5% stake, which would value his holding at €1.8bn (£1.59bn). He has made more than £65m in the past eight years through shrewd property and share transactions and recently transferred ownership of his Dublin home to his wife Moya. We conservatively value Coulson’s Ardagh stake at £1bn until we see the success of the float, adding £70m for property deals and other earnings.