Microsoft founder Bill Gates was a major bondholder, with €27m ($34.6) in bonds at the end of 2006, in Irish banks which were bailed out by taxpayers after the financial collapse.

Gates, the world's second-richest man, was a bondholder in Anglo Irish Bank, Irish Nationwide Building Society, Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Bank, according to filings which detail investments held by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The filings showed that the Gates Foundation trust held more than $34.6m (€26.7m) worth of bonds in Irish banks at the end of 2006.

This total included 7.29 million bonds in Anglo Irish valued at nearly $10.6m (€8.15m). The trust also listed a holding of 1.34 million Irish Nationwide bonds worth €2.02m. It also owned Bank of Ireland and Bank of Ireland (UK) bonds worth more than €7.7m as well as more than €5.54m in AIB bonds.