Denis O'Brien Birthday & Fun Facts

Height, Age, Net Worth, Biography & More

Martha Martins
Jan 31, 2024 By Martha Martins
Originally Published on May 13, 2022
Denis O'Brien is the founder of Digicel, a prominent telecom company in the Caribbean.
All ages
Read time: 5.4 Min

About Denis O'Brien

Denis O'Brien, chairman and founder of Digicel Group, was born in Cork, Ireland, on April 19, 1958.
Denis is a wealthy Irish businessman who completed his postgraduate education with an MBA in Corporate Finance. He is regarded as one of Ireland's most successful businessmen for his success in the telecoms area.
He has worked in several industries, including a media holding firm (Communicorp), telecommunications consortium (Esat Telecom), aircraft leasing (Aergo Capital), and petroleum infrastructure (Topaz Energy).
Haitian President Michel Martelly granted O'Brien the National Order of Honor and Merit in 2012 for his investments, initiatives, and support of the country. In 2014, he and his partner Fred Browne, sold Aergo Capital to a US investment firm, CarVal.
Denis O'Brien is married to Catherine Walsh and the couple has four kids, Joanne, Abigail, Denis and Kerry.

Denis O'Brien Net Worth, Earnings & Spending Habits

What is Denis O'Brien’s net worth?

Denis O'Brien's net worth is believed to be over $3.2 billion.

How much does Denis O'Brien earn per year?

Unfortunately, the annual income of Dennis O'Brian is unknown and a review is being run to figure out the actual yearly income of this Irish entrepreneur.

Height, Age & Physical Attributes

How tall is Denis O'Brien?

Denis O'Brien stands at 5 ft 10 in (178 cm) tall.

How old is Denis O'Brien?

Denis O'Brien was born on April 18, 1958. He turned 64 years old in April 2022.

Childhood And Education

O'Brien grew up in the Ballsbridge neighborhood of Dublin and his three sisters. Denis and Iris O'Brien raised their children with love and support. His father started a veterinary supply firm, which ultimately became a horse feed company. Denis learned how to clinch deals while accompanying his father on business trips to Asia, Europe, and the United States. He began working as a hotel bellhop at the age of 14 and started cleaning buildings at 15.
Rathgar High School was O'Brien's school. O'Brien earned a Bachelor's degree in Politics and History from University College Dublin in 1977. He subsequently went to Boston College in the United States to get an MBA, which he completed in 1982. He was awarded a scholarship while at UCD.

Family, Romance And Relationships

Who is Denis O'Brien’s partner?

In 1997, Denis O'Brien married Catherine Walsh. Joanne, Abigail, Denis, and Kerry are the names of their four children. This couple has also been blessed with grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Career And Professional Highlights

Best Known For…

O'Brien co-founded Aergo Capital in 1999 and owned 80% stake. Aergo traded around 150 aircraft worth over €791 million (roughly $1 billion) until 2014. O'Brien and his partner, Fred Browne, sold the business in October 2014.
Esat Telecom Group PLC had a stock sale on November 7, 1997, and was listed on the Irish Stock Exchange, the London Stock Exchange, and the NASDAQ. O'Brien sold it to BT for €250 million, according to reports.
O'Brien launched Digicel, a telecommunications business based in the Caribbean, Central America, and the Asia Pacific, in 2001. In Jamaica, he also attempted to set up a wireless network. Digicel was presented in 32 countries by 2020. The development of Digicel was a major success and Denis rapidly increased his ownership by buying shares with a 29.9% interest in Independent News and Media in 2012, subsequently clashing with Tony O'Reilly.
O'Brien also founded the Digicel Foundation. He was honored in 2012 for his investments, contributions, and efforts to promote the country. O'Brien was awarded honorary membership in the Order of Jamaica in 2015. Digicel announced the sale of Telstra Corp, an Australian telecommunications firm, for $1.6 billion in October 2021.
O'Brien bought Siteserv in 2012 and rebranded it Actavo in 2015. Actavo entered the US market in 2016 with the sale of Atlantic Engineering Services, a structural engineering firm.
O'Brien purchased a 2.82 % stake in Celtic F.C. in Glasgow in 2006, raising his total ownership to 13% by the end of 2018.
O'Brien began his career as an employee of Trinity Bank, but he left to serve as a personal assistant to Tony Ryan, an aviation rental company owner.
Denis founded Communicorp, a media holding business, in 1989 and owned independent radio stations such as FM TV and Newstalk, which he owned until 2021. The corporation has eight radio stations since 2014. In 2017, the corporation transferred its UK radio station to a new independent company in which it owned 98% of the shares. O'Brien sold Communicorp to Bauer Media Audio in February 2021.
In 1991, O'Brien founded Esat Digifone, a joint venture with Telenor, Norway's state-owned telecommunications company, and won Ireland's second GSM mobile license. The Moriarty Tribunal was formed due to the license's awarding circumstances.

Charity Work

The Digicel Foundation was established in 2004 by Denis O'Brien. As the organization's founder, he has supported various communal and social projects in Haiti, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and Papua New Guinea.
Following the earthquake in Haiti in 2010, O'Brien donated €3.5 million to aid relief efforts.
O'Brien established a fully-funded scholarship for MBA Irish students at Boston College in 2015. He also contributed €2,500 to independent candidate Mary Davis' campaign in the 2011 Irish Presidential Election.
O'Brien joined the Bank of Ireland as Director in 2000 and was promoted to Deputy Governor in September 2005. He resigned as both Deputy Governor and member of the bank's board in September 2006. Due to growing demands relating to his overseas business activities, O'Brien allegedly quit.
From 2008-2016, O'Brien donated up to €12 million to the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) to help pay the wages of prominent officials, notably Giovanni Trapattoni.

What awards has Denis O'Brien won?

The businessman won the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 1998, the National Order of Honor and Merit in 2012, Clinton Global Citizen in 2012, the Prestigious Clinton Global Citizen Award in 2013, the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015, the Prestigious Order of Jamaica in 2015, and the Global GS1 Award. He received an honorary doctorate in 2006 and an honorary Life president in 2018. He also received an Outstanding Achievement Award in 2019.

Denis O'Brien’s Hobbies And Interests

Dennis O'Brien has never really expressed any opinions regarding his hobbies and interests.

Other Interesting Denis O'Brien Facts And Trivia

  • Denis is Ireland's richest native-born person and was included among the World's Top 200 Billionaires in 2015.
  • As of 2022, Patrick Collison is deemed the richest Irishman.
  • O'Brien was suspended for three months in high school until the school allowed him back to partake in a rugby tournament.
  • O'Brien was in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum's annual winter meeting.
  • O'Brien bought Planal SA, the holding company for the Quinta do Lago golf resort in Portugal, in 1998.
    We would love your help! If you have a photo of Dennis O'Brien , either of them alone or a selfie that you would be happy to share, please send it to hello@kidadl.com.
    If you have knowledge or information that you think would help us improve this article, please contact us.

Denis O'Brien Birthday & Fun Facts Facts

Birth Name

Denis O'Brien

Date of Birth

1958-04-18

Nationality

Irish

Place of Birth

Cork

Age

Height

178 cm

Eye Color

Blue

Occupation

Businessman

Education

Boston College

Net Worth

3200000000

Partner

Catherine Walsh

Parents

Denis O'Brien Sr , Iris O'Brien
We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Martha Martins

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Linguistics

Martha Martins picture

Martha MartinsBachelor of Arts specializing in Linguistics

Martha is a full-time creative writer, content strategist, and aspiring screenwriter who communicates complex thoughts and ideas effectively. She has completed her Bachelor's in Linguistics from Nasarawa State University. As an enthusiast of public relations and communication, Martha is well-prepared to substantially impact your organization as your next content writer and strategist. Her dedication to her craft and commitment to delivering high-quality work enables her to create compelling content that resonates with audiences.

Read full bio >
Read the DisclaimerFact Correction