Some of life’s wonderful generosity smiled today on a 61 year old businessman, Eddie Molloy, from Longford who spoke in an interview with comedian Brendan O’Carroll who was guest-hosting the Marian Finucane Show on RTE Radio1 this morning. The show was interviewing people who had lost their businesses because of the Irish financial crisis.
The Irish comedian is the writer of the hit TV series Mrs. Brown’s Boys and also the new film version, Mrs Brown’s Boys – D’Movie, which opened this week to rave reviews.
The Longford couple had ran the local SuperValu and employed almost 50 people up until 2008. They sold that business and had invested in property – just before the Irish financial crash occurred later that year. Their timing could not have been worse and the Molloys lost everything they had worked for over the years. “We are literally broke now” said Mr Molloy.
Over the next few years the 61-year-old businessman opened a total of three new shops in Longford town, including two newsagents, but they also closed as the recession bit into Ireland.
Eddie mentioned to Brendan O’Carroll that he had been working on a new Irish Food business venture that is unavailable in Ireland, but that he was receiving absolutely no assistance or credit from any of the Irish banks or financial institutions. He has been working and researching his new food product and that he has received very favourable interest in it from restaurants and hotels that he had approached with the idea.
Mr O’Carroll was so moved by the couple’s story that in gratitude to the lucky break that he has received himself over the last year that he decided, live on the radio, to put his hand in his own pocket and offered the Longford man €30,000 of his own money as an investment in his new food business idea!
“I’ll tell you what Eddie,” said O’Carroll, “I’m very, very lucky. I had a movie open this week and it’s gonna make me fortune! I’ll put €30,000 quid in front of you and we’ll see if that idea works.”
The show was later inundated with calls from listeners who were stunned with the generosity of Mr O’Carroll, who had shown himself to be a very capable and understanding interviewer even before this amazing act of kindness occurred.
Since the radio interview was broadcast on Saturday last, it emerged in some of the Irish press that Mr Molloy was living in what was described as a “palatial home” which includes a wine cellar and that he was being pursued by the Irish Revenue for business taxes owed. For most of those interviewed by O’Carroll on the radio show that morning, this was the same story over and over again and there are now many business people living in Ireland under the shadow of losing their homes because of what happened as a result of the Irish banking crisis.
Brendan O’Carroll acknowledged Mr Molloys tax problems on the radio the following day, apologising for the fact that his public offer of €30,000 investment had actually caused the family more heartache. The comedian said that this was not his intention and that despite the tax demand the Molloys might actually benefit from the publicity.
The Dublin -born comedian who employs five members of his own family in his hit TV series and in the new film, insisted his offer was still good saying, “I think he’s a good bet and if he’s not, sure, I’ll just get on the line with the taxman myself.”
He also spoke of the need for determination of people like Mr Molloy in helping to regenerate Ireland’s economy by adding, “That’s really what’s going to get us out of this, the hope of people, people having a go.”