Dermot Desmond received a windfall of 27.5 million euros last year from Intuition Publishing, his Dublin-based e-learning company. This brings the amount of cash he has received from the company in the form of dividends and loans to around € 42.5 million over the past two years.
Accounts recently filed for Intuition, which sells online training software to companies such as banks, show that it paid Mr. Desmond a dividend of 15 million euros in 2020 and the same in 2019. He paid Mr. Desmond a dividend of € 15 million in 2020. also paid over € 12.5 million in cash in the form of a loan last year to KnowHow Holdings, the Isle of Man company controlled by Mr Desmond which is also the parent company of Intuition.
The accounts also suggest that Intuition, which has offices in Dublin, Hong Kong, Australia, Singapore and the United States, paid rent of around € 537,000 to Foundation Quay Icav, a tax-efficient investment vehicle owned to Mr. Desmond.
The Foundation is chaired by Mr. Desmond’s close associate, John Bateson, who is managing director of the businessman’s International Investment & Underwriting firm.
The financial statements do not show which of Intuition’s offices are leased to Mr. Desmond, but the company is registered in a building in the International Financial Services Center, where he is known to have built property. The company employs 127 people.
“Pandemic preparedness plan”
Intuition’s accounts show he is very lucrative, with net profit margins of 26%, bolstering his status as a cash cow for the billionaire investor.
Intuition said the impact on its operations from Covid was “minimal” as it recorded 2020 sales of around € 27.5 million, similar to the previous year. More than half of its sales came from North America while only € 200,000 in sales came from Ireland.
Directors, who no longer include Mr. Desmond although he remains the ultimate owner, said Intuition had a “pandemic preparedness plan” that was activated for Covid, leaving its operations “uninterrupted.”
The activity’s pre-tax profit amounted to nearly 6.7 million euros. Directors of the company said it focused last year on selling e-learning products related to “fintech. [financial technology] and cybersecurity ”.
Even after paying out more than 27.5 million euros last year in cash dividends and loans to companies controlled by Mr. Desmond, Intuition had cash at the end of the year of almost 30 millions of euros. The retained earnings are around 40 million euros.
Mr. Desmond’s other investments include large minority stakes in two exchange companies, travel software company Datalex and Canadian miner Mountain Province Diamonds. It also owns the tech security company Daon.