Irish Director Autumn 2014

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Irish Director Irish Director


ISSUE 33 • AUTUMN 2014 €7.50 STG£6.70)




Responding to disruption through business agility

Ireland’s potential to become a global ICT powerhouse





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Letterfrom fromthe theeditor editor Letter Welcome to the autumn issue of Irish Director. Welcome to the autumn issue of Irish Director. In our director profile we talk to In our director profile we talk to philanthropist Loretta Brennan Glucksman, who philanthropist Loretta Brennan Glucksman, who has contributed so much to Ireland over the has contributed so much to Ireland over the last 25 years in a wide range of areas, including last 25 years in a wide range of areas, including peace, arts and education. In our One to Watch peace, arts and education. In our One to Watch section, we look at the story so far for Athlonesection, we look at the story so far for Athlonebased OxyMem, a UCD spin-out that is winning based OxyMem, a UCD spin-out that is winning accolades for its breakthrough wastewater accolades for its breakthrough wastewater treatment technology. treatment technology. We’re also launching our new ‘Future We’re also launching our new ‘Future Business’ series with a look at the concept of business agility in reacting to Business’ series with a look at the concept of business agility in reacting to changing customer needs. changing customer needs. The role of the chairperson comes under the microscope in our The role of the chairperson comes under the microscope in our Boardroom section. We also look at how organisations can make themselves Boardroom section. We also look at how organisations can make themselves whistleblowing ready. whistleblowing ready. And we continue our 12-month CSR campaign with a look at the complex And we continue our 12-month CSR campaign with a look at the complex area of the marketplace, which takes in everything from supply chains to area of the marketplace, which takes in everything from supply chains to customer relations and product quality. customer relations and product quality. Thanks as ever to the IoD members and others who have contributed their Thanks as ever to the IoD members and others who have contributed their time and shared their expertise and insights. We welcome feedback and time and shared their expertise and insights. We welcome feedback and suggestions to suggestions to

We connected every business in Weavers Court directly to the USA. 10 Gigabit internet speeds for every tenant - a world’s first.

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Competitive advantage in a connected world.

Grainne Rothery Grainne Rothery Editor, Irish Director Editor, Irish Director

Editor: Grainne Rothery Editor: Grainne Rothery Production editor: Karina Corbett Production editor: Karina Corbett Designer: Keith Wealleans Designer: Keith Wealleans Client services: Sharon Bolger, Client services: Sharon Bolger, ph: +353 1 625 1422, email: ph: +353 1 625 1422, email: For advertising and marketing queries, For allall advertising and marketing queries, contact Sam Hobbs on ph: +353 1 625 1425 contact Sam Hobbs on ph: +353 1 625 1425 or email: or email: Irish Director published Business LeadershipLtd Ltd Irish Director is is published byby Business && Leadership Ph: +353 1 625 1400 Ph: +353 1 625 1400 Email: Email: Address: Top Floor, Block 43B, Yeats Way,Park ParkWest WestBusiness BusinessPark, Park, Address: Top Floor, Block 43B, Yeats Way, Nangor Road, Dublin 12 Nangor Road, Dublin 12 Business and Leadership Ltd 2014 ©© Business and Leadership Ltd 2014

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Front cover photo: Aengus McMahon / McMahonPhotography Photography Front cover photo: Aengus McMahon / McMahon ISSN: 1649-3621 ISSN: 1649-3621

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Irish Director The Official Magazine Of The Institute of Directors In Ireland



NEWS FROM THE IOD 4 A word from the Institute’s CEO Maura Quinn UP FRONT News, tips and culture


VIEW FROM ABOVE 12 Irish management leaders offer words of wisdom DIRECTOR PROFILE 16 Loretta Brennan Glucksman on leading by example


ECONOMY 50 Ireland’s ability to ‘turn on a dime’ DOING BUSINESS IN... 52 Looking at the business and export opportunities in Australia LEGAL 56 New legislation means organisations need to become whistleblowing ready SPECIAL REPORT 59 Corporate social responsibility and the marketplace

NEW FRONTIERS 20 How LifeWave’s Galway site has become a strategic hub for the global business

SENIOR APPOINTMENTS Who’s moving where in Irish senior management

ONE TO WATCH 24 Breakthrough technology earns OxyMem international acclaim

WHAT’S ON 76 Cultural calendar dates for the autumn

BOARDROOM The role of the chairman

NETWORKING 78 News and photos from the IoD Autumn Lunch


FUTURE BUSINESS 34 The concept of business agility in reacting to changing customer needs IoD MEMBER PROFILE John Tuohy, CEO, Nightline Logistics Group


SECTOR PROFILE 44 Ireland’s thriving ICT sector has a strong mix of indigenous and multinational companies


WEBSITE for further information


For subscriptions, please contact +353 1 625 1422

Business & Leadership would like to thank the patrons of Irish Director magazine – Merc Partners and Vodafone –­for their support

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Governance landscape improving but still a way to go to achieve real diversity and transparency on boards The governance landscape in Ireland has changed for the better in recent years, according to some 81pc of IoD members surveyed recently. A majority also acknowledge that directors have learned from the governance failings of the past. Such sentiment is encouraging and indicates that we are making headway. There is a sense among those surveyed that the profile and composition of boards in Ireland has changed in the wake of the economic downturn, with directors now being better qualified for the role, more new faces appearing around the boardroom table and a greater number of directors from a wider variety of backgrounds and disciplines serving on boards in Ireland. There is little doubt that increased regulation has had an impact in improving governance standards, particularly in the financial services sector where it has been rigorously applied. Education and training has also had an important role to play. There is a recognition now that director education and training is essential for effective boards and this has been evidenced through an overwhelming appetite for director and board training programmes in recent years, with the IoD’s Chartered Director Programme in constant high demand.

However, there is still some way to go in terms of achieving real diversity and transparency on boards. Many still label boards in Ireland as ‘male-dominated’ and lacking sufficient diversity and a concerning 70pc claim that a ‘who you know’ culture remains a factor in how people are appointed to boards in Ireland. At the core of improving standards of corporate governance in this country is a need to address the issue of transparency in the appointment process and to ensure that boards are appropriately skilled and representative of stakeholder interests. A diverse board, with a transparent appointment process, will boost overall board functioning and consequently create greater confidence in organisational leadership. Most directors concede that on the issue of gender diversity on boards, there has been only a marginal improvement in recent years. Yet while gender is the topic of choice in terms of discussing board diversity, it is just one aspect, albeit important. Diversity in skills, experience and background is also critical. Diversity is about having people on a board with different perspectives, who are not afraid to challenge. If we can achieve greater diversity on boards in Ireland with a broad reach of expertise and depth of knowledge across a whole range of business disciplines, then boards will be better placed to anticipate challenges and in turn, companies can better safeguard their own future.

Maura Quinn Chief Executive, Institute of Directors in Ireland


06 Nov Venue:

19 Nov



For information on upcoming events please contact Sharon Kirwan on 01 411 0010 or visit




The Shelbourne Hotel, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2

For information on the IoD Christmas Lunch contact Sharon Kirwan on 01 411 0010 or visit

> NOT YET A MEMBER? To learn about your role and responsibilities as a director and to develop your professional skills, knowledge and expertise, why not join over 2,000 fellow directors who are already members of the IoD in Ireland. Call us today on 01 411 0010 or visit

Irish Director Autumn 2014

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John O’Connor Head of Technology Partner and Commercial Contracts

The first rule of success Surround yourself with the best The success of any law firm can be measured by the quality of its people and its clients. We have the best of both. Financial Times 2012-2014 Matheson is the only Irish law firm commended by the Financial Times for innovation in corporate law, finance law, dispute resolution and corporate strategy.

John leads a dedicated team of technology and commercial contracts lawyers, who have advised on many of the largest and most complex technology projects in Ireland.

Irish Tax Firm of the Year 2013 International Tax Review

Matheson. The law firm of choice for international companies and financial institutions doing business in and through Ireland.

Client Choice 2013 International Law Office

Contact John at or your usual contact at Matheson.


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New York

Palo Alto

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The Sheaf (La Gerbe),1953. Maquette for ceramic (realised 1953) Gouache on paper, cut and pasted, mounted on canvas 115 1/2 × 138 ×1 1/4” (293.4 × 350.5 × 3.2 cm). Collection University of California, Los Angeles. Hammer Museum. Gift of Mr and Mrs Sidney F Brody © 2014 Succession H Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York


– FROM LONDON TO NEW YORK Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs, which ran from 17 April to 7 September of this year, turned out to be most popular exhibition ever held at Tate and the first to receive over half a million people. Some 562,622 people visited the exhibition at the Tate Modern in London. Matisse Picasso at Tate Modern previously held the record as Tate’s most visited exhibition with 467,166 visitors in 2002. This is followed by the Damien Hirst exhibition with 463,087 visitors in 2012. The Cut-Outs is the most comprehensive exhibition ever devoted to the artist’s paper cut-outs made between 1937 and 1954 and a reassessment of his colourful and innovative final works. It includes around 100 cut-outs, borrowed from public and private collections around the world – along with a selection of related drawings, prints, illustrated books, stained glass and textiles. After London, the exhibition moved on to New York, where it opened at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) on 12 October and will be on display until 8 February 2015.

Blue Nude II (Nu bleu II), spring 1952. Gouache on paper, cut and pasted, on paper, mounted on canvas 45 3/4 x 35” (116.2 x 88.9 cm). Musée national d’art moderne/Centre de création industrielle, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Purchase,1984 © 2014 Succession H Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

IoD welcomes new

chartered directors Congratulations to the following chartered directors who received their CDir accreditation in recent months: Fiona Flannery, John M Hennessy, Andrew Hastings, Michael Horgan, John O’Reilly, Brendan Byrne, Alan Mitchell, Annette Flynn, Bernie Gray and Peter Hughes. For information on the IoD’s chartered director programme and the steps to becoming a chartered director, contact IoD training co-ordinator Sheila Byrne on 01 411 0010 or


LAUNCHES NEW ONLINE EXPORT RESOURCE DHL Express has announced the launch of a new website (www., which has been specifically designed to guide new or emerging exporters and help them to take their first steps into the export marketplace and trading internationally. The website contains information such as how to prepare a good export plan, opportunities in key international markets, duties and tax information, as well as details on specific paperwork that may be required so that goods can be customs cleared without delay upon arrival at their destination. Furthermore, there are a number of useful tools and guides available for download and in the DHL Partners section there are links and resources from Irish organisations that can provide further expert advice.

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Change leaders: exporting social innovation – Michael Kelly, Grow It Yourself

Michael Kelly, founder of the global Grow It Yourself (GIY) movement in 2009, explains how the community-led organisation can grow to have a worldwide impact. What is the global scale of the problem GIY is working to solve? Globally, diet-related illness is surpassing infectious diseases for the first time in human history. Two billion people are either obese or overweight and a billion people are starving. I think a lot of the problems that we have, particularly with diet-related disease, arise from a kind of apathy. That’s the gap we’re trying to address by helping people to grow some of their own and get a deeper understanding of food as a result, which we call food empathy. Tell us about challenges or opportunities for GIY in the current environment We see opportunities out there that we didn’t have five years ago, both because of the environment and because of the stage of the organisation. An example is the GIY at Work programme, which is aimed at getting people to grow their own food in the workplace as an employee wellness initiative. This is indicative of two things: the stage we’re at as an organisation to resource that properly, and that corporates are now trying to find ways to engage their employees around something meaningful. Tell us about internationalising the GIY model We know the GIY group model works in other territories, and there are groups now in Europe, Africa and Australia. The UK has been a learning experience for us. We think for it to work there we may need to run campaigns and events first to create profile and then let the groups emerge out of that. So it may well be that success in the UK is achieved by turning our model completely upside down to what we did here in Ireland. This is an extract from an article in the Change Leaders series, a collaboration between Ashoka Ireland and –www.businessandleadership. com/sustainability/item/47535.


Women in the boardroom:

Anne O’Dwyer Anne O’Dwyer, managing director of Duff & Phelps Ireland, shares her thoughts on leadership, gender quotas and the obstacles to women getting into leadership roles. How do you define great leadership? I think it is essential to listen and learn from the strengths and experience of others around you. Always strive to lead by example and bring people forward with you. I’m a big believer in your strength being in your team. How do you feel about gender quotas? I am not in favour of gender quotas as I think that women are capable of obtaining senior positions on their own strengths and merits. I think empowering and mentoring fellow female colleagues will assist in bringing more ladies through to senior levels. We have some very bright and talented females across all levels within our team and I have no doubt that with continued support and encouragement some of those ladies will be future stars in the boardroom. What do you believe are the main obstacles to women getting into leadership roles and how do you think these can be overcome? I think hard work, perseverance and good support structures are crucial for any woman seeking to get into a leadership position. It is important to believe in yourself and your abilities. Work-life balance is always difficult, but it can be achievable if you build up an excellent team around you. This is an extract from a Q&A article that first appeared on Business & Leadership –

IBEC RAISES GROWTH FORECAST FOR 2014 TO 6.1PC Ibec has raised its growth forecast for 2014 from 3.1pc to 6.1pc based, it said, on “remarkably positive” trends right across the economy. In its latest Quarterly Economic Outlook, the business group said “spectacular growth” would make Ireland the fastest growing economy in Europe this year. In its Q3 Economic Outlook, Ibec also raised its 2015 GDP growth forecast to 4.5pc (up from 3.9pc), and this year’s GNP growth forecast to 5.4pc (up from 2.5pc). It said exports will grow by over 12pc this year, the strongest growth since 2000. Imports will grow by 11pc and the resulting net exports will contribute 3.5pc to GDP growth, by far the largest contribution to growth. “The economy is recovering much faster than most expected,” said Ibec head of policy and chief economist, Fergal O’Brien. Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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NATIONAL CHAMPIONS NAMED IN EUROPEAN BUSINESS AWARDS Thirty-one businesses from Ireland have been named national champions in the European Business Awards sponsored by RSM International. In total, 550 companies across 33 European countries have been named as national champions. All will now progress to the second phase of the competition. “The calibre of all of this year’s entrants from Ireland was particularly impressive, which is testament to their innovative approach and entrepreneurial spirit in business,” said Aidan Scollard, partner responsible for the European Business Awards at RSM Farrell Grant Sparks. The 31 Irish national champions are: Agile Networks; Climote; CurrencyFair; Dawn Meats; DHR Communications; EPS Group; EBS International; Exertis Ireland; Friends First; GloHealth; H&K International; Home Instead Senior Care; Horse First; Joe Duffy Motor Group; KTL Group; Learnosity; McAfee; Morgan McKinley; Nua Naturals; OSG Group; PayPal; Pepper Asset Servicing; Rottapharm; Smart Wall Paint; TNS Distribution; Trintech; Trustwater; United Drug Supply Chain Services; Version 1; The vStream Group; and Recent Irish winners of the European Business Awards have included Airspeed Telecom, Coillte and

DUBLIN AND SHANNON AIRPORTS WIN GLOBAL MARKETING AWARDS Dublin Airport and Shannon Airport were recently named among five winners of global marketing awards at the World Routes 2014 conference in Chicago. The awards, which are for excellence in marketing by airports, are voted exclusively by airlines worldwide and are divided into just four categories based on airport size. Dublin Airport won the World Routes Award for airports that handle between 20 million and 50 million passengers per year, defeating fellow finalists in the category, Copenhagen, Dusseldorf, Munich and Seattle Tacoma. Shannon Airport, meanwhile, won the category for under four million passengers, beating off competition from Bremen, Aksu, Cuneo Levaldigi and Kilimanjaro. Singapore’s Changi Airport Group was the winner in the over 50 million passenger category, while Brussels Airport won the four million to 20 million passenger category, as well as the overall 2014 Routes Award. Tourism Australia was honoured in the Destination Marketing category.

O’Donnell + Tuomey to receive Riba’s Royal Gold Medal Irish architects Sheila O’Donnell and John Tuomey are to receive the 2015 Royal Institute of British Architecture’s Royal Gold Medal. Given in recognition of a lifetime’s work to a person or group of people who have had a significant influence either directly or indirectly on the advancement of architecture, previous recipients of the medal include Frank Gehry (2000), Sir Norman Foster (1983), Frank Lloyd Wright (1941) and Sir George Gilbert Scott (1859). The husband and wife team co-founded their practice O’Donnell + Tuomey in Dublin in 1988, having previously worked together for Stirling Wilford Associates and Colquhoun & Miller in London. In the early 1990s, they were part of the ‘Group 91 Architects’ group, which was involved in the regeneration of Temple Bar. They have have been shortlisted for the Riba Stirling Prize a record five times: in 1999 for Ranelagh Multi-Denominational School (Dublin); in 2005 for the Lewis Glucksman Gallery (Cork); in 2011 for An Gaeláras Irish Language Arts and Cultural Centre (Derry); for Lyric Theatre (Belfast) in 2012; and this year for the London School of Economics Saw Swee Hock Students’ Centre. They have exhibited three times at the Venice Architecture Biennale and are both alumni of the School of Architecture at University College Dublin, where they continue to teach. “O’Donnell + Tuomey’s work is always inventive – striking yet so well considered, particular to its place and brief, beautifully crafted – and ever developing,” said Riba president Stephen Hodder. “Sheila and John are at the vanguard of contemporary Irish architecture and I am delighted they are to receive this lifetime honour.” They will be presented with the 2015 Royal Gold Medal at a special event at the Riba in London on 3 February 2015.

Lewis Glucksman Gallery

Irish Director Autumn 2014

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Time is precious, so we promise to take up as little of yours as possible. On average, our passengers can be in a taxi or boarding a DLR train within 15 minutes of landing. On departure, passengers require only 20 minutes from terminal entrance to departure lounge. And because we’re the only London airport that’s actually in London, just 25 minutes from Westminster, you’re always closer to where you need to be. Quicker, more punctual and actually in London.


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Charitable giving in Ireland up 7pc in 2012, but well behind UK

L–R: David Lane, managing director, Ecclesiastical Insurance; chief executive designate of the Charities Regulatory Authority Úna Ní Dhubhghaill; and Dennis O’Connor, director of 2into3 Ireland’s charitable giving amounted to Ð852m in 2012, up 7pc over the previous year, according to a new research report. However, at an average Ð185 per capita, Ireland lagged significantly behind the UK’s Ð289 per capita average. These findings are revealed in the Fourth Annual Fundraising Performance Report, published by 2into3 and supported by charity insurance specialist Ecclesiastical Insurance, along with Focus Ireland and St Patrick’s Mental Health Foundation. The report of a representative sample of 872 Irish not-forprofit organisations reveals the sector had a total income of Ð10.4bn in 2012. State funding accounted for 58oc of this total income, down 2pc in 2012 from 2011.

IOD MEMBER’S MEMOIR DETAILS LIFE AT GENERAL MOTORS Shenanigans, the memoir of long-time Institute of Directors in Ireland member Arnold O’Byrne, was launched recently by veteran broadcaster Gay Byrne. O’Byrne worked for General Motors for 35 years. During this time he spent seven years in the UK as chief auditor for all UK and Ireland operations. This was followed by 15 years back in Ireland as chairman and managing director of Opel Ireland Ltd. The book details the successful sponsorship of the Football Association of Ireland and how that sponsorship, coupled with other marketing activities, took Opel to the No 1 position. It also covers the corruption, dishonesty and disrespect O’Byrne encountered in his working life. The underlying theme throughout the book is the need to act at all times with integrity. O’Byrne writes that “acting with integrity is not just for some times but for all times”. In reviewing the book the Irish Examiner wrote: “Anyone interested in the machinations of management within a global automotive powerhouse would do well to seek out his book”. The book, which includes forewords from Niall Quinn and John Lynch, is available now from good book shops and


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IRELAND MOVES UP THREE PLACES IN WEF COMPETITIVENESS INDEX TO 25TH Ireland has moved up three places in the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Index 2014–15 to 25th place. This is Ireland’s highest placing in the index since 2009. Some of Ireland’s rankings for specific categories include: (low levels of) irregular payments and bribes (ninth); judicial independence (sixth); strength of investor protection (sixth); (low) annual inflation (first); quality of primary education (seventh); quality of the education system (fifth); agriculture policy costs (ninth); (low) trade tariffs (fifth); (low) business impact of rules on FDI (first); country capacity to attract talent (10th); (high) FDI and technology transfer (first); and exports as percentage of GDP (fifth). Some of the areas where Ireland did not perform so well include: strength of auditing and reporting standards (62nd); Government budget balance (132nd); Government debt (137th); intensity of local

competition (60th); time required to start a business (52nd); effect of taxation on incentives to work (93rd); ease of access to loans (117th); and soundness of banks (139th). The WEF said Ireland’s move up the rankings reflected its financial market recovery. It said despite its economic woes, Ireland features strong foundations for its long-run competitiveness. Elsewhere, Switzerland and Singapore remain in first and second place in the rankings, while the US is up two places to third, and Finland and Germany drop one place each to fourth and fifth respectively. The top 10 listing is completed by Japan (up three to sixth), Hong Kong (remains seventh), Netherlands (remains eighth), UK (up one to ninth) and Sweden (down four to 10th).

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Patrick Farrell, Head of Private Banking

DELIVERING EXCEPTIONAL STANDARDS IN BANKING. AIB Private Banking offers a dedicated banking service for professionals. By delivering a superior standard of banking, you can focus on your career, your business, your family and your interests. AIB Private Banking is an exceptional new banking experience, offering exclusive, highly-personalised banking to professionals, business people and other individuals who require a more proactive, responsive banking relationship from AIB. At AIB Private Banking, we offer you direct and confidential access to a Relationship Manager. They will help you to efficiently manage your daily banking transactions and best manage your finances to achieve your goals, freeing up your time for your career, your family, as well as your interests and passions. Each dedicated Relationship Manager is supported by an expert banking team, to ensure a responsive service where you take priority.

WE MAKE BANKING EASY, SUPPORTING YOUR BIG DECISIONS, HELPING YOU TO PLAN FOR THE FUTURE. SUPERIOR STANDARDS & SERVICE LEVELS AIB Private Banking is committed to making daily banking easier and more time-efficient for its most highly-valued clients, by introducing new standards and service levels. As an AIB Private Banking client you can contact your Relationship Manager for a prompt response on a range of financial issues, from ordering a new credit card or currency to transferring funds, or more complex financial issues you need information on, such as your mortgage or your pension. Your Relationship Manager can manage many banking tasks by phone, email or fax ensuring a prompt, efficient service. This greatly reduces the amount of time that you need to give to your banking commitments, giving you the peace of mind that comes with confidential and trusted expertise. Our team at AIB

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Private Banking is dedicated to follow-through on all commitments to you, doing the small tasks exceptionally well. You can also benefit from the most advanced digital banking services in Ireland. A RETURN TO THE TRADITIONAL BANKING MODEL Patrick Farrell, AIB’s new Head of Private Banking, who is responsible for rolling out this new service, is clear in his motivations and aspirations for AIB Private Banking. “What we are aiming for is a return to the up-front values of trust and personal service that were traditional in the banking relationship. Our most highly valued clients are often those who have the least time to look after their financial affairs. By delivering the highest level of day-to-day banking and the most advanced digital banking service, we can provide the premier banking experience for our clients. Our goal is to help them to meet their life objectives, giving them the support and advice they need to plan their financial futures. We place the client’s long-term interests at the heart of the banking relationship, and are proactive in delivering solutions that will serve their needs and the needs of their family members through all life stages.” We would be delighted to discuss how our new AIB Private Banking services can benefit you. Typically our clients have an annual salary or income which exceeds €250,000. If this applies to you, talk to us about a better banking service which is tailored for you.

To find out more about AIB Private Banking, contact Patrick Farrell: Telephone 01-6417634 or email Autumn 2014 Irish Director Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.

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INSIGHTS from some of Ireland’s business leaders

Who’s in charge of digital? At the turn of the 20th century, the advent of electricity caused a major panic in industry. A disruptive innovation that invoked fear amongst business leaders, it also presented an unparalleled opportunity to transform business performance. Many years before it became pervasive, organisations worldwide introduced the VP of electricity role, a senior board level appointment that signalled a clear intent to create the organisational capability to exploit this new phenomenon. Today, we are in the midst of the most disruptive innovation industry has ever experienced. The digital revolution continues to accelerate and disrupt at an unprecedented level. And Ireland continues to be at the forefront of this revolution; the latest Google/ TNS Connected Consumer study showing continued leading technology adoption by Irish consumers - 86pc of the population online, 62pc purchasing online, 65pc smartphone penetration and 38pc tablet penetration. We are all familiar with this trend and the enormous opportunity that digital presents. Yet, who is in charge of digital in your organisation? Who is your VP of electricity equivalent? If it is the IT director, traditionally in charge of all things tech, consider Gartner’s research which reveals that the marketing director will spend more on IT than any IT director by 2017. If the marketing director is heading your digital efforts, consider that currently over 75pc of all advertising spend in Ireland is allocated to non-digital media despite the unprecedented consumer shift to digital. The business landscape is changing at an accelerated rate. Yet, over 100 years after the emergence of VPs of electricity, a larger revolution of arguably greater scale and impact has not signalled any similar move by industry. If anything, this current revolution is noticeable for a lack of action in upskilling our organisations for the digital age, with digital still viewed in most organisations as ‘someone else’s job’. But digital is now part of everyone’s role. It is pervasive across all roles in all organisations, just as it is pervasive in the way we live our lives today as consumers. It presents a huge opportunity for business to acquire, retain and engage with customers in a way never possible before, and on a global basis. Consider the rise of the digital native – the new breed of

SHANE NOLAN is Google director of SME sales for UK and Ireland.

customers and employees under the age of 25. This generation has never experienced anything other than a life with the internet and they will struggle to comprehend and interact with organisations that have not embraced digital. How relevant will your organisation be in winning these new customers, or in hiring and retaining this new workforce? We are a small nation, and for Ireland to become the leading digital economy in Europe, the skills of our people will be pivotal. We have the youngest and most educated population in Europe, with every entry level career starter a digital native. The time is now for all businesses to fully embrace digital, and that means going beyond a symbolic VP of digital role. As business leaders, we all need to redeploy ourselves as digital experts. That will be the single most efficient and sustainable way for us all to place digital at the heart of our businesses. Anything other than that, and we are all guilty of seeing digital as someone else’s job.

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to the management team to include and promote the process of mediation with their teams. The results have been very rewarding and we have seen an improvement in employee relations, which we can link directly to the promotion of workplace mediation within our company. Some of the most difficult relationships between employees, often with a long history, are being resolved through mediation. There are other benefits too. Managers are more confident dealing with employee complaints. Very often in the past the default option was to instigate a formal investigation for every complaint. Now managers are thinking of mediation at an early stage and reaching to its processes. With less time being spent on dispute resolution, we are seeing increased productivity across the company. What is even more interesting is how the impact of mediation is extending to other areas of our business. We are seeing managers applying learnings from their experiences with mediation within their teams to how they manage other aspects of their business. The benefits of coaching and, in particular, the soft skills gained in understanding mediation are far reaching. The successful introduction of mediation in the workplace at Aramark Ireland provides an example for others to follow. Key to our success has been:

CAROLINE COSTIGAN is HR director at Aramark Ireland.

Mediation as an approach to workplace disputes Like many multinational companies, Aramark Ireland has formal company procedures for resolving disputes in the workplace. With close to 4,000 people employed in our company, disputes are part and parcel of the working day. Very rarely do they reach the point where formal company procedures have to be invoked but even day to day disputes, if left unresolved, can fester and impact on working relationships. It is also true that while formal procedures are valuable when appropriate, by their nature they can be challenging in terms of maintaining positive working relationships after the formal process is concluded. As a company that is committed to health and wellness in the workplace we recognised that a ‘one size fits all’ approach to dispute resolution was not working for our employees or for our company. We needed different ways to resolve workplace disputes depending on the type of issue being addressed. We wanted a process that would facilitate employees to resolve their difficulties while at the same time enhancing their working relationship. Workplace mediation was a new concept, not only for our business and our employees, but to our industry. But it was very clear that the process offered tangible benefits as a means of facilitating employees to engage in an open and constructive way to resolve their disputes. With the support of the CEO, the human resources department invested significant resources to embed workplace mediation within the company. This included training two HR executives to act as mediators in a dispute, updating HR policies and providing training


A commitment to the process from the CEO and manage- ment team with dedicated resources provided to the HR department to introduce mediation.


A robust mediation policy that provides clear guidance, sets expectations and supports our employees in making informed decisions within the process.


Training skilled ‘contact people’ who are equipped to provide independent and objective guidance to employees on their op- tions with regards to having their concerns heard and resolved.


Requiring all people managers within our organisation to attend a quarterly workshop that includes training on informal approaches to managing workplace complaints and updates on mediation.

All of the above is underpinned by a management team that believes in the value of mediation. As a company we have seen the positive benefits it brings to our organisation and we continue to promote its importance and celebrate its successes.

‘Some of the most difficult relationships between employees, often with a long history, are being resolved through mediation’ Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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‘A strong CSR plan that influences stakeholders and creates opportunities for a business to market itself has to start with integrity in the way the company operates’

ALAN TYRRELL leads PSG Plus, the corporate and reputation management business of PSG Communications.

Good business means good profits: the role of CSR Having a clear corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy is no longer a ‘nice thing to do’, it is a must do for every progressive business. It makes good business sense and helps to support good profits. CSR is not a new concept but its rise to prominence has been driven by four seismic shifts in society, namely: mistrust of large organisations; rise of consumer power through communication channels like social media; rise of shared values; and the quest for meaningful connections with the brands we choose. These changes, driven increasingly by social media and the changing way we engage with stakeholders, mean that CSR is an incredibly powerful tool to build consumer trust, support employee engagement, and drive reputation with multiple stakeholders. Irrespective of the size of your organisation, a CSR strategy should play a vital role in your business plan. With ongoing resource scarcity – on both a global and local level – the challenge with CSR rests in where to start. While the not-for-profit sector is often seen as a starting point, CSR is also about how you do business rather than the business you do and the days of simple corporate donations to good causes are long passed. A strong CSR plan that influences stakeholders and creates opportunities for a business to market itself has to start with integrity in the way the company operates. One of the most potent ways of building credibility and demon-

strating integrity as an organisation is to create relevant alignments and partnerships that support improvements in society. The most sophisticated programmes build a clear and tangible connection between CSR activity and the company’s overarching business strategy. This means that business objectives and societal objectives are fully aligned rather than operating as distinct silos. An excellent example of this is the shoe brand Toms. For every pair of Toms shoes sold around the world, one pair of new shoes is donated to a child in need. It is a simple concept, yet incredibly effective and the result is a solid brand built on strong ethics and worthy of consumer trust. The business has also grown to become an estimated US$100m company in the eight years since it was set up. A successful CSR strategy should do the following: 1. Involve and mobilise staff – a truly integrated strategy will link CSR goals and objectives with an employee’s own targets ensuring that CSR is part of their day-to-day role and they should be evaluated with this in mind. This can be started through a simple CSR engagement audit among your teams. 2. Clear mission statement and policies – the CSR activity needs to include a mission statement and policies including how partners are chosen. Partners and projects should have the same values and understanding of the partnership and goals. This should be communicated internally and show clear alignment with the outcome of your CSR audit. 3. A purpose that is linked to the company strategy – the strategy should directly link to your business fundamentals, values and objectives. If the CSR strategy is standalone it will usually be ineffective, but if it is tied to the company strategy it can reinforce and help move the company forward by increasing visibility and goodwill among other things. All evidence points to the fact that businesses that invest in and actively participate in CSR activities gain both financial and reputational competitive advantage over peers that do not engage in CSR. When implemented candidly and leveraged in a smart way, CSR programmes can improve corporate reputation and strengthen customer engagement as well as positively impacting internal communications – not to mention the fulfilment of knowing that you have contributed to helping others.

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A philanthropic

PURSUIT Loretta Brennan Glucksman has been one of Ireland’s greatest champions in recent years and she continues to focus much of her time, energy and generosity here. Grainne Rothery reports he granddaughter of four Irish-born emigrants to the United States, Loretta Brennan Glucksman’s long-standing interest in and connection with Ireland is not too surprising. What is extraordinary is how her relationship with Ireland has developed and the sheer scale of her generosity to the country and its people in the 27 years since her first visit. As chairman of the American Ireland Fund for 18 years until last December, Brennan Glucksman helped raise nearly US$400m for charities throughout Ireland and for Irish causes around the world. She and her late husband, New York-born Lewis Glucksman, personally contributed more than US$27m to the fund. The Glucksmans’ philanthropic journey with Ireland began in 1989 with the funding of a library and music hall at the University of Limerick. Other major projects supported by the couple included the Glucksman Map Library at Trinity College Dublin, the Lewis Glucksman Art Gallery at University College Cork and the Millennium Wing at the National Gallery of Ireland. In the early 1990s, meanwhile, they supported the establishment of Glucksman Ireland House, a New York University centre in two adjoining townhouses on Fifth Avenue, focused solely on Irish and Irish American studies and culture. Despite growing up in a “very Irish influenced household” in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Brennan Glucksman visited Ireland for the first time in 1987. “Everybody thinks I dragged my poor HungarianJewish husband to Ireland for the first time but the opposite is the


truth,” she says. “But Lew loved Ireland way before we met. When he was a young navy officer in World War II he was stationed in a submarine chaser in the North Atlantic. And anytime he had a furlough, he would go to Ireland and make a pilgrimage to where his favourite writers and artists lived and worked. So he knew Ireland very, very well and loved it. “And he took me to Ireland for the first time. We both loved it and fortunately went back often and finally bought a home [in Cobh] and spent lots of time there.” As a child, her paternal grandfather taught her poems and prayers in Irish. “If the right button is pressed I can still spout some of them off,” she says. “But I certainly don’t have any Irish and I would love to. I keep making resolutions because we teach the language at Glucksman Ireland House at New York University and it’s one of the most popular courses. And not just with Irish kids. Particularly Asian and African American kids flock into it.” Brennan Glucksman’s own academic training was as an English teacher. She taught primary school when her three children were very young and then finished her master’s programme and taught at universities in Pennsylvania and in New Jersey. She and her first husband, Jack Cooney, divorced amicably and she describes him as one of her dearest friends. “We shared the parenting of our children very closely and we helped one another as much as we could.” In the early 1970s, she was invited to host a book show on the newly established public television station in Trenton, New Jersey. “I said, okay, having no idea what to do. So we put on a weekly show

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‘Any organisation needs revitalisation in leadership – you don’t get interesting ambitious young people if they don’t see an opening to rise to top leadership’

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about current books. That grew into interviewing writers, which grew into interviewing politicians and then into me working with the MacNeil/Lehrer Report, a politics and discussion programme on every night. “In the meantime I met Lew and he was travelling a lot and he asked me very often to come with him. That got in the way of a fulltime television job so I resigned from that, really very happily, but I do miss it. It’s a wonderful way to keep current.”

Glucksman Ireland House The couple’s increasing focus on Ireland was helped along by the establishment of Glucksman Ireland House. “Lew was a trustee at New York University, which has many ethnic houses but no Irish house. We went to Ireland with the president of NYU to see if there would be any interest in reciprocity and exchange of students and so on and of course there was. “So we formed Glucksman Ireland House and opened it in 1993 and it’s been a wonderful success, way past any of our dreams. Well, we didn’t know what to dream – we just knew there had to be something concentrating on Ireland in New York City, which had such a huge Irish American population. It was one more thing that cemented us with Ireland. Going back and forth we made so many friends within the Irish university system. It was the beginning of us concentrating philanthropically on Ireland.” She believes philanthropy to be a deeply personal thing. She says she has an “intrinsic antipathy” towards challenge grants, which require the recipients of funding to complete certain actions before the money is released. “I think philanthropy has to be generated from something deep within one’s self that requires some gesture of caring for others. I don’t think it can be coerced.” The best way to encourage philanthropy, she says, is by example. “I love when people who are vastly philanthropic are given publicity. Some of them want it and some of them don’t, but I think it’s very helpful to the rest of us to see how fulfilling it is for people who have practised philanthropy. And I think it may open some other people’s minds about maybe considering this.” She believes philanthropists in Ireland almost always develop a personal relationship with the projects they support financially. “In the States you very seldom see that. It’s much more hands off. But here in Ireland I don’t know that we ever supported anything that we didn’t get personally involved with. And that doubles the satisfaction when you can see up close and personal what the gift is resulting in. Now, you have to be very aware of not overstepping the bounds and being dictatorial in the way the money is being spent. I’ve seen that happen and it’s not good for anybody. It’s certainly not good for the project, but it’s not good for the donor either.” Brennan Glucksman’s areas of interests have tended to focus on education, arts and cross-border projects. “But we don’t have any strictures. I don’t think there’s anything we wouldn’t look to if we felt the need to support it.” Her involvement with Northern Ireland began with cross-border projects supported by the Ireland Funds. “And then I came to know some of the people and was just blown away by them, by their nobility, how they lived with any dignity at all in such circumstances.

And they were all to a person very dignified, very intent on fixing this for their children. We became very intent on integrated education very early on, feeling that if children are educated together a lot of barriers fall down that would be reinforced if they are kept separate. “The integrated education movement has been so powerful and I’m not sure that it gets enough credit. I would love to see the day when government sees the value of educating children together and supports it financially.” When we speak, she is visiting Belfast. “It’s exhilarating to be here,” she says. “It’s just so satisfying to see all that these people have accomplished. As the kids say, there’s a different vibe. The whole place pulsates with a positive feeling that was never here 15, 20 years ago. “I can’t give enough credit to the political leaders who were at the vanguard of making this happen and continue to. I think both Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness deserve a huge amount of credit, as well as – and we can never forget them – Ian Paisley, David Trimble and especially John Hume in the very early days, and Gerry Adams. All that they put on the line and the chances they took, that has brought us to this wonderful improvement in this beautiful part of the world. “And now, what we have always known is that we have to get an economy going. And that’s happening. That is the most exhilarating part. That’s what I wish Lew had lived to see, because it is starting. There’s a terrific amount of direct foreign investment here now. There’s great opportunity. Again it’s based on hard, hard work by all the people involved.

Stepping down Brennan Glucksman stepped down as chair of the American Ireland Fund nearly a year ago but continues to be involved as chairman emeritus. She’s deeply proud of what the fund has achieved since being set up in 1976 by Dan Rooney and Tony O’Reilly. She credits Maurice Hayes, who was chair of the fund in the early days, with helping to ensure the money was never spent for negative purposes. “I always call Maurice our conscience because he knew and knows the political reality of the island of Ireland and we never put a dime wrong. And there was a difficulty in early days, particularly money coming from the United States, and not from any malevolence, just from misplaced loyalty. It’s one of the things I’m most proud of and Dan and Tony should be very, very proud. “We’ve raised over US$450m and every penny of that has gone to a positive result and helped in a very positive way. She has no regrets about handing on the baton, she says. “Any organisation needs revitalisation in leadership – you don’t get interesting ambitious young people if they don’t see an opening to rise to top leadership. John Fitzpatrick was nominated and elected and he is doing a fantastic job and I must say I’m having a lovely time just being a guest. “I may have had some misgivings if I saw that the leader wasn’t strong enough and he wasn’t bringing everyone along with him but that is so far from the case. He has done a brilliant job. And I’m loving that and everyone is. You get a lot of buzz, a lot of energy out of a change in leadership and that’s what everybody has been

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‘I think philanthropy has to be generated from something deep within one’s self that requires some gesture of caring for others. I don’t think it can be coerced’

Loretta Brennan Glucksman with David Cronin, CEO, University of Limerick Foundation and Prof Don Barry, president, University of Limerick showing. “I’m very, very active with a lot of other projects and I don’t feel that I’m sitting around twiddling my thumbs and not having enough interesting things to think about.” These other activities include being on the board of arts and science at NYU and being co-chair of the board at Glucksman Ireland House. “And I’ve recently gone full circle and gone back home to Limerick, which is where Lew and I started 25 years ago. I was invited to be chairman of University of Limerick Foundation and I happily agreed and that’s working out very well. And I’m working with Denis Brosnan and Michael Noonan on an economic project for Limerick, which I’m very excited about. It’s a wonderful city and really needs a boost economically. I think we’re in a position to that now.”

Elsewhere, she’s on the board of public radio station WNYC in New York, which she says brings her back to her public broadcasting roots. “And family is a wonderful outlet for me. We spend a lot of time together.” At the time of our interview, she describes herself as “very, very excited” about the fact that she’s about to become a great-grandmother for the first time. She remains hugely engaged with her areas of philanthropic interest. “I love what we have been doing and will continue to look for opportunities in those spaces – education, community relations and the arts.” And she says she cannot recommend philanthropy highly enough. “You feel better when you know you’re helping in whatever subtle, tiny way and I can’t recommend it enough. It’s much better than a pill or an injection.”

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new frontiers

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US health technology company LifeWave’s Galway site has now become a strategic hub for the business, with responsibility for 70pc of the global manufacturing of LifeWave patches and 60pc of global distribution, writes Sorcha Corcoran


hen US health technology company LifeWave set up an operation in Ireland four and a half years ago, the aim was to provide manufacturing, distribution and customer services for its European business and to employ 24 people. Its workforce currently stands at 34, and the site in the Raheen Industrial Estate in Athenry, Co Galway is responsible for 70pc of the global manufacturing of LifeWave patches and 60pc of global distribution, according to general manager of the Irish operation Colman Dillon. “Galway has become a key strategic hub, which has led to expansion and new opportunities for development. We’ve upgraded our manufacturing process and two of our products are now classed as Class 1 medical devices so we operate to the ISO 13485 standard,” he explains. “We have just taken occupancy of a facility directly across from the existing one here in Athenry. This will provide us with 15,000 sq ft of additional warehousing and distribution space, 5,000 sq ft of yard/storage space, an additional 3,000 sq ft of office space with an option to add another 3,000 sq ft of office space.

“In total we will go from currently having 18,000 sq ft to a total available usage area of 44,000 sq ft and we expect to employ 40 people by mid-2015.” Founded by current CEO David Schmidt in San Diego, California in 2004, LifeWave offers a range of acupressure products made using its patented non-transdermal patch technology, as well as a nutrition line that all claim to improve quality of life without the need for drugs, stimulants or needles entering the body. They are used to manage pain, treat insomnia and make people feel more energetic, amongst other things. Irish boxer Wayne McCullagh is among LifeWave’s endorsers from the world of sport, having found its energy enhancer and glutathione patches beneficial during training, workout and recovery. His photograph and testimonial are in the reception area in the Athenry facility. Otherwise from a European perspective, Dillon notes that TV news footage from German national station ZDF in May 2014 showed members of the national football team wearing LifeWave’s IceWave pain relief patches and its Y-Age glutathione patches for improving overall health.

‘Some 60–70pc of our customers are female and they get involved in sales because of their love of the products. Word of mouth is very important’

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Local collaboration A recent aspect of LiveWave’s story in the west of Ireland has been to get more involved locally with developing new technologies within the organisation and collaborating with third level colleges on research projects. It recently set up a new company called Medical Energetics, which got approval in September to take part in a Ð150,000 collaboration study with researchers at NUI Galway into diabetic foot ulcers, which is partly funded by IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. It is also to take part in major four-year study at the Regenerative Medicine Institute Remedi at NUI Galway, which was recently awarded Science Foundation Ireland funding. It is part of the enterprise group providing Ð12m in funding to the project, which is costing a total of Ð28m. “When researching new technologies, initial development of concept is conducted in San Diego. Clinical safety and efficacy work as well as further clinical trials are all being planned to be managed from our Galway facility,” says Dillon.

LifeWave’s turnover has risen from US$17m globally in 2009 to a predicted US$40m this year (Europe accounts for 60pc of this). It was listed in 2009, 2010 and 2011 on Inc Magazine’s list of fastest growing private companies in the US. According to Dillon, its products are backed by solid research with over 70 clinical studies in total completed to date, a number of which have been independent. For example, a study entitled ‘Osteoarthritis Double-Blind Placebo Controlled LifeWave Med Pain Relief Study’ carried out in 2013 at five different centres in France by Dr Pierre Volckmann of the Marcy l’Etoile clinic found LifeWave’s IceWave pain relief patches

to be effective for 94pc of subjects. Research and development (R&D) spend is between 10pc and 15pc of LifeWave’s annual turnover, and there has also been a shift towards increased responsibility for R&D in Athenry, particularly in the past couple of years, Dillon notes. “We have been migrating towards clinical indications and have done a number of clinical trials throughout Europe in areas such as osteoarthritis, insomnia and fibromyalgia. From Galway, we have also done 20 different studies to support LifeWave products globally, which is a relatively large amount for an operation of its size.” Having started out with the wellness patches 10 years ago, LifeWave entered into the area of nutrition more recently, releasing a product range called Theta based on its proprietary technology in 2013. It’s a system centred on breakthrough formulas that provide essential and functional nutrients to your body “in a targeted and tasteful way”. All Theta formulas are made with natural premium ingredients and contain no artificial sweeteners, colours or preservatives. Galway has played its part in this diversification process, adding a Theta product based on colostrum to its portfolio this year - which Dillon says helped to drive sales growth of 25pc in the first six months of 2014 from the site. “What makes this system novel is our proprietary nutrient delivery system, which involved over 90pc of people tested feeling the results of these products within only minutes of use. “Part of our expansion will be that we will start packaging this product going forward [from Galway], which means we can support countries we sell into with language specific labelling. All of the products that have come to us to be manufactured on that basis over the past four years have done well.”

Sales and distribution A member of the Direct Selling Association in the US, LifeWave uses multi-level marketing to sell its products around the world. It has around 35,000 members/distributors globally, 20,000 of which are in Europe. “Our sales method equates to the one used traditionally by

‘With LifeWave, once anyone purchases our products they are not tied into anything. In addition, we emphasise that all of our products are supported with clinical studies and we are making claims that are proven’

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cosmetics brand Avon. It means that our customers are more than customers – they also have the opportunity to build a business once they have our products,” Dillon explains. “Some 60–70pc of our customers are female and they get involved in sales because of their love of the products. Word of mouth is very important.” There have been negative connotations associated with multi-level marketing because of people getting tied into pyramid schemes. Dillon defends the sales approach: “We are selling products, not a system, so it is 100pc based around people getting benefits from using our products. “Pyramid schemes are based around people investing in services. With LifeWave, once anyone purchases our products they are not tied into anything. In addition, we emphasise that all of our products are supported with clinical studies and we are making claims that are proven.” When it comes to distribution, the Galway operation processes 500-600 orders a day for customers throughout Europe via its order fulfilment centres and supported by its logistics partner DHL. Providing support to reps and distributors in nine different languages, LifeWave has 12 order fulfilment centres in total that service over 100 countries worldwide at present. “Ideally we would want to ship all individual orders from Galway,


but this doesn’t necessarily make sense from a cost point of view. Last year we opened fulfilment centres in South Africa and Hong Kong, rather than supplying express bulk packaging from Ireland to these locations. It was a strategic decision to open these centres based on the cost model that best suits our customers in those regions.” As Europe accounts for 60pc of group turnover, it has a key part to play in how the company as a whole looks at customer services, logistics and exporting strategy, Dillon continues. “We don’t sit around a table and decide to open up a market in France, for example. The way it works is a representative will contact us and say there is an opportunity in a certain jurisdiction and ask whether we can help. “We then look at the products in terms of registration and see how we would need to support the customer in that respect. If that’s easily done, we would then get information from DHL on all we need to know about from a strategic point of view – for example, a list of duty rates, Vat rates, and what kind of service we can provide. “Usually we can compile this data in a day. We can then say to that representative that we can support them, sometimes under certain conditions. We never say no to a new opportunity. Our model is built around helping existing representatives/customers to expand the business.”

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one to watch

Athlone-based OxyMem has its sights set on disrupting the global wastewater market with its breakthrough technology, writes Karina Corbett



ased on the development of a pioneering technology that delivers a completely new and more energy efficient process for aerating and breaking down wastewater, OxyMem Ltd was set up by Prof Eoin Casey and Dr Eoin Syron in 2013 as a spin-out from UCD’s School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering. In the short time since then, the Athlone-based company’s patented technology has been recognised with a series of national and international awards. Until now wastewater aeration has been a very energy intensive process that has relied on ‘forced’ or ‘bubble aeration’ to deliver oxygen to the bacteria that break down the wastewater. Pumping and treating wastewater typically accounts for up to 2.5pc of all electrical power produced in a developed country and the aeration process comprises, on average, of 60pc of this energy. However, OxyMem’s patented technology does not rely on a bubble to deliver oxygen to the bacteria. Instead, it uses a gas permeable membrane to deliver oxygen directly to the microorganisms, resulting in up to 99pc oxygen transfer efficiency as no oxygen is lost to atmosphere. According to OxyMem, its ‘bubble less’ aeration system is typically four times more energy efficient than best in class solutions available today. So how did the idea for this innovation come about? “Since the early 1980s researchers have recognised the potential of membrane aerated biofilm reactor [MABR], which is OxyMem’s core technology,” explains Wayne Byrne, the company’s CEO. “However the commercialisation had been hampered by two significant challenges – the difficulty in controlling biofilm on the membranes, and membrane production costs. “Through the efforts of Casey and Syron, this first technical hurdle – biofilm control – was overcome. The now patented biofilm control technology is our core IP and enabled the commercial development of the OxyMem MABR. The subsequent challenge – membrane

costs – were resolved during the spin-out process, clearing the path for the successful commercialisation of OxyMem today.” Syron, the company’s technical leader and innovator, conducted his PhD on the MABR under the guidance of Casey. Their research resulted in the patent, which forms the basis for the OxyMem proposition, says Byrne. As the commercial visionary behind the operation, in the last five years Byrne acquired, restructured and sold waste equipment supply company Manvik Group before seeking more challenges in the cleantech space. He went on to set up Biocore Environmental Ltd and has established a significant presence in wastewater sludge management and renewable energy production. In the last three years he has raised over Ð16m in debt and equity.

Energy efficiency The energy efficiency aspect to the technology is considered by OxyMem to be at the heart of the product. “OxyMem is a game changer and represents all the characteristics of a truly disruptive technology,” says Syron. “Wastewater treatment is a remarkably energy intensive process. “Aerobic biological processes have formed the cornerstone of wastewater treatment for the last 100 years. The most commonly deployed system, the activated sludge [AS) treatment process, dates back to 1914, where pollutants are broken down by microorganisms in the presence of oxygen. “The efficiency of the aeration process depends heavily on the amount of surface contact between air and wastewater. In diffused (bubble) aeration typically less than 30pc of the oxygen supplied by blowers is transferred to the wastewater resulting in an enormous energy waste. “Once at the surface the bubble escapes back into the atmosphere resulting in lost oxygen/energy. Even with the most recent developments in fine bubble aeration technologies the maximum

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‘OxyMem is a game changer and represents all the characteristics of a truly disruptive technology’

Wayne Byrne, CEO, OxyMem

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Dr Eoin Syron, Wayne Byrne and Prof Eoin Casey oxygen transfer efficiency is limited to about 35pc. “OxyMem works without the need for forced aeration, or bubbles. OxyMem’s bubble-less oxygen transfer capabilities can dramatically reduce the operating costs for wastewater aeration due to the superior oxygen transfer efficiency, which can be up to 95pc. “Globally it is estimated that energy efficiency measures could account for more than 65pc of energy-related emissions savings up to 2030. Wastewater treatment facilities offer excellent conservation potential as energy demands continue to increase due to population growth, increasingly restrictive environmental regulations and demand for wastewater reuse.”

Future plans Looking to the future, Byrne is optimistic about OxyMem’s development, including its financial growth. After a successful funding round in recent months, he believes it will probably turn over about Ð400,000 this year. “We started generating revenue for the first time in June this year so we are turning into a revenue generating business. Between now and the end of this year we’ll probably turn over something between Ð300,000 and Ð400,000 and next year I believe we will probably turn over about Ð2m. We currently have 24 employees and we will almost double this next year. “We were at a US trade show recently, it’s one of the biggest shows in the world in New Orleans, and we were literally run off our feet. We had international interest from as far as China, India, the US, Canada and Mexico. There was massive interest and demand in terms of what we are putting into the marketplace. “The driver is essentially energy efficient wastewater treatment and there are very few companies in the world that can offer a solution that would allow you to arrive at a energy neutral wastewater treatment plant and that is everyone’s goal and aspiration now. Our biggest challenge is actually servicing the demand and we are limited and constrained by our ability to produce the products. We will sell everything that we produce so that becomes our limiting factor.” Byrne says OxyMem has major plans to revolutionise the wastewater treatment market globally as it continues to be a pioneer in the industry and in the attainment of an energy and

‘Our biggest challenge is actually servicing the demand and we are limited and constrained by our ability to produce the products’

carbon neutral wastewater treatment plant. “We want great products, supported and developed by great people, which will define standards for wastewater treatment,” he adds.

Awards and accolades OxyMem’s technology has been recognised with a range of awards over the last year or so, including Innovation of the Year at the 2013 Irish Laboratory Awards. Earlier this year it was named winner of the overall Innovation of the Year at the 2014 Irish Times InterTradeIreland Innovation Awards and also declared the winner of the Energy and the Environment category award. Just recently it won the Overall Excellence in Intellectual Property Award at the Intellectual Property (IP) Awards 2014, in addition to the Tech IP Award. In June, meanwhile, it won the WssTP SME Innovation Award for Membrane Technologies at the Water Innovation Conference in Brussels. OxyMem has been also been shortlisted in the Innovation category of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland’s Sustainable Energy Awards 2014, while Casey has been announced as a finalist in the Research category of the awards for research activity on the MABR. It’s the only Irish company to have made it to the finals of the 2014 Platts Global Energy Awards, which will be announced in New York on 11 December. And it has been shortlisted in the Energy Efficient Technology of the Year category at the UK Energy Awards 2014, with the winners due to be named on 2 December. It has also been included in the Global Top 30 for the Global Cleantech Cluster Association (GCCA) 2014 Later Stage Awards. The Top 30 consist of mid-to late-stage companies that originate from a variety of cleantech industries and have a proven track record in their home market, with the goal to expand internationally.

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In the


The role of the chair is vital in ensuring that any board effectively sets and monitors its organisation’s strategy


s the person setting the tone of and providing leadership to the board and ensuring its effectiveness in terms of setting and monitoring the implementation of its company’s strategy and direction, the role of the chairperson cannot be underestimated. “The appointment of a chair is a critical one in any organisation,” says Maura Quinn, CEO of the Institute of Directors in Ireland. “The chair leads the board in setting, overseeing and monitoring the company direction and strategy. They are ultimately responsible for effectively leading the board. “And how that board conducts itself in terms of the tone it sets from the top is very dependent on the messaging and the conduct and the leadership provided by the chair. If the chairperson does not behave in a way that is both transparent and equitable and showing the highest standards, then it is very difficult to expect the board to behave in that way.

“So, when people assume the role of the chair, they really need to realise that their conduct and how they present themselves and how they interact – both with the board and with senior management – is really important and is looked at by everybody.”

Wide ranging skills A wide range of skills and characteristics are required for the role of the chair. Aside from leadership, having and displaying the highest standards of integrity and probity are right at the top of the list. But also very important, according to Quinn, are the ability and willingness to encourage open dialogue in such a way that everyone around the table feels comfortable about sharing their opinions, even if these are contrary to the majority view. “The board has to be a safe place where people can ask questions, debate issues, challenge management and feel they’re making a valuable contribution and are being heard,” she says. “The worst thing for any board is where somebody feels they’re not being

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‘The board is a separate entity and the roles of the chair and chief executive have very distinct responsibilities’

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Maura Quinn, CEO of the Institute of Directors in Ireland listened to or that they are being painted as a stereotypical dissenter.” It’s also important to be able to reach a consensus. “A board operates as a holistic unit. There may be decisions at the end of the day where individual board members feel they’re not 100pc in favour but, on balance, they can live with them. What’s important is that all views are taken into consideration and are heard. But ultimately, the decision is a board decision and when it is arrived at it is owned by the board in its totality.”

Being able to develop a good working relationship with the chief executive is also vital. “To me, it’s the most important relationship and it’s one where the people get on at a personal level, but not in a cosy way,” says Quinn.

Respectful distance So, there should be a mutual respect, but also a distance, she stresses. And clearly defined roles are also critical. “Where that’s

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not in place, it can lead to confusion and conflict. Sometimes, there are situations where chairs feel they have a responsibility to get involved in executive matters and that creates conflict with

Appointing the chair In an ideal situation, the chair will be appointed from within the board but there will also be occasions where it may not be possible to appoint from within or when appointing an external chair may be preferred. The chair will have demonstrated leadership, possibly having chaired key committees or sub-committees, demonstrated an ability to listen to people around the table and they will have good judgement, people and communication skills. “It’s difficult for someone to assume the role of chairperson if they have no prior experience of the board or indeed the business,” says Maura Quinn. “But, as well, they need to have developed relationships with other board members and, particularly, with the chief executive and other key management executives.” And, where boards identify a vacancy down the line, they may well appoint a non-executive director with a view to them potentially becoming chair in a number of years’ time.


‘When people assume the role of the chair, they really need to realise that their conduct and how they present themselves and how they interact – both with the board and with senior management – is really important and is looked at by everybody’

Case study: Taking the consensus view of the view that you bring people As a private equity investor in recent years, I have assumed the role of executive chairman of many of the companies I have acquired. Having previously been a chief executive for much of my working

with you. From my own experience, I know executives sometimes fear

life I’m very aware of the importance of the relationship between the

board meetings because they

CEO and the chair. In my role as chairman, therefore, I have been very

feel they are inquisitorial rather

conscious of developing a good relationship and being available to the

than an exchange of information.

CEO as the need arises. When I was first appointed a director many years ago, Jim Culliton [former CRH chairman] said to me that the most important job of the chair of the board is to appoint a chief executive and to then support

Very little creativity comes out of inquisitorial board meetings. I think it is very important to make sure that an executive, when they sit down at a board meeting, wears the hat of a director. As a private equity chairperson, you tend to have more engagement

them and guide them in their relationship with the board and with the

with the business but despite this, I’ve learned not to try to do the chief

outside world.

executive’s job and to take on his or her stresses.

As chair, I would also focus very much on ensuring that the board is effective in setting and implementing the objectives and strategy of

Dermot Divilly is currently chairman and major shareholder of a

the company. So, not being involved in the day-to-day hustle and bustle

number of private equity companies, as well as being chairman of the

of the company but rather focusing on what drives the company, its

Personal Injuries Assessment Board and Irish Independent Hospitals

sector and the strategy and working extremely closely with the chief


executive. I would always work behind the scenes to make sure that everyone’s on board. Some chairs try to railroad things through but I’m very firmly

Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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the chief executive. Other times, you get a chair who’s very hands off – they really don’t understand that their role is to monitor the performance of the chief executive. “I think there has to be a one-on-one relationship between the chair and the chief executive that is based on trust,” she continues. “There are occasions where something may arise that the chief executive will want to run by the chair. The role of a chief executive is a lonely place and there may sometimes be an issue that they’re dealing with that may be sensitive and they want to have a sounding board. And that’s the role of the chair – to be that sounding board.” It’s not a given that all chairs and chief executives can achieve this kind of relationship. “I don’t think it happens successfully in all organisations. I think the human dynamic is a very important part of it. “There’s always a tension there and I think there should be. Chief executives need to realise that above all the chair’s role is to lead the board. But the chief executive also has to realise that the chair has to monitor their performance and be happy that they’re doing their job. That in itself should create a tension because the chief executive is always in the situation of having to perform and be conscious that they’re delivering.” Conflict or misunderstanding can arise when chairs and chief executives don’t fully understand their roles and responsibilities, Quinn says. “For example, I’ve heard chief executives talking about ‘my board’. It isn’t ‘your board’ – it’s the company’s board. The board is a separate entity and the roles of the chair and chief executive have very distinct responsibilities. And that always creates and should create a tension and a distance.” According to Quinn, all the details relating to the roles and responsibilities of the board, the chief executive and the chair should be very clearly set out in a board manual. “That lays down all

of the governance structures of the board and the responsibilities and they’re there in black in white,” she says. “If there’s no clarity around responsibility, then you are leaving yourself open to conflict. If there is an issue around which there is conflict and it is covered in the board manual then it’s very clear as to whose responsibility it is. If it doesn’t exist or isn’t complete, then it’s very difficult. “Good governance is about clarity, it’s about clarity of responsibility and that’s really important.”

Case study: Ensuring the right balance A key challenge of being on any board is ensuring that the right balance of performance and conformance is achieved for the business. As chair, you have the further challenge of ensuring that discussions are carried out in a collaborative way and that balance is achieved in relation to the overall planning of the boards schedule including the board sub-committees. Another key role as chair is ensuring the correct level of interaction between executives and non-executives. For that to happen, there needs to be clarity around the roles of the chair and the CEO, while the non-executives and the sub-committees all need to be very clear

Areas of responsibility

on their terms of reference and their own responsibilities. As a nonexecutive you need to be very conscious of the fact that you are involved in understanding the business, but you’re not involved in the execution or the doing side of things.

The chair’s responsibilities include setting the agendas for board and

Having chaired in the not-for-profit and public sectors as well as on

general meetings, ensuring that board members are given sufficient

the commercial side, I believe these learnings apply irrespective of the

information and relevant papers, and chairing these meetings.

business and of the sector.

The chair should also monitor board members’ performance

The same planning tools – organising work, developing a plan and

and follow up if they feel additional training, help or engagement is

agreeing it – are required right across the board. It’s very similar in


all sectors for the leadership, communication and negotiation skills

In conjunction with the nominations committee, the chair should

that allow the chair to work with various members of the board and

take a leadership role in determining the composition and structure of

the CEO, and to ensure there’s collaboration in that relationship so the

the board and managing board succession.

board can fulfil its role and can support the business.

“And I think that’s a responsibility a chair should always be cogni-

At the end of the day any board has to carry out its governance and

sant of – it’s not something you wheel out every so often,” says Maura

responsibilities in the context of the performance of the business.

Quinn. “You always need to be aware of whether you have the right

It’s a critical balancing act to ensure that both get done, because

skills around the table. And, you may have the right skills now but in

your primary role is to ensure the business is sustainable in the long

six months’ time something may happen or the business may go in a



Ne (5,

direction where you feel you don’t have a competency in a certain area. The role of the chair is in watching that all of the time and identifying

Geraldine Kelly is chairperson of Microfinance Ireland and Plan

shortcomings and how people are performing.”

Ireland. She is also chair of the Global Remuneration Committee for the



Fu Co

reg con

Irish Director Autumn 2014

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Future business in association with Vodafone


INNOVATION In the first article in Business & Leadership and Irish Director’s new ‘Future Business’ series, Sorcha Corcoran explores the concept of business agility in reacting to changing customer needs


he expression ‘if you snooze, you lose’ has to be resonating more and more with the business community as the world hurtles through a period of unprecedented change and consumers become ever more demanding. The past 10 years have brought us pervasive internet connectivity, cloud-based applications, mobile devices that connect everywhere, remote working and digital innovations that create newly empowered customers. And with rapid technological advancement and high consumer expectations has come an increased level of disruption. “A disrupter is a person or firm that really changes the way business functions. It is not just about an incremental innovation or a novel idea. The most common way to be a disrupter is to change customer expectations – for example, it shouldn’t take 30 seconds for a bank card to clear or a minute for a computer to warm up. Once consumers have tried the innovation, they don’t want to go back to the previous way of doing things,” explains US-based business strategy consultant Dr Trish Gorman. Probably the most high-profile example of a company to fall foul of disruption in recent years is Kodak, which went bankrupt in 2012 because it missed the boat when digital cameras came on stream, despite the fact that one of its engineers actually invented the technology in 1975. Kodak management’s inability to see digital photography as a disruptive technology led to the company’s downfall.

Every industry is subject to disruption. Think of Ryanair introducing the low cost fare model to aviation, DVDs replacing videos and Apple’s various product launches from the iPhone to its recent announcement that it would move into mobile payments. The phrase ‘the greatest thing since sliced bread’ came from the disruption in 1928 involving a loaf of bread being pre-sliced with a machine and packaged for convenience. In order to respond to disruption and a rapidly evolving market environment businesses have to be agile. US-based technology and market research company Forrester recently defined business agility as “the quality that allows an enterprise to embrace market and operational changes as a matter of routine”. Gorman, who was a speaker at the InterTradeIreland 2014 AllIsland Innovation Conference in University College Dublin on 1 October, breaks business agility down into four parts under the headings ‘strategic’, ‘resource’, ‘operational’ and ‘personal’ – which are in decreasing order of disruption. “Strategic agility refers to the ability to see a new opportunity and go after it – say you’re operating a Disney theme park and you spot an opportunity in cruise ships. Resource agility is about attaching talent and money to an idea. It isn’t hard to put money against a good idea, what really separates agile businesses is the ability to take resources away from something that is no longer a good opportunity and move them elsewhere. Resources tend to be sticky once they’re invested,” she says. “The operational element assumes you’re not going to change

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‘When it comes to agility, don’t let company size blind you to what you really need to look at’

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Future business in association with Vodafone

US-based business strategy consultant Dr Trish Gorman

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37 your business model, but within that you make the right decisions to become more efficient and effective. This could be about cross training your people, for example, the staff in hotel reception being trained to work in the back office or vice versa. “Personal agility is concerned with the individual and being the right kind of leader for the right moment in your business’s story.” As Gorman points out, modern day business leaders sometimes have to tell their employees to break all the rules and forget everything they ever knew so the company can move in a new direction, while other times they have to steer the organisation to hold its course. “It used to be we had this idea that there had to be different people doing different things within an organisation – the ‘boring’ accounting types looked after the finances while the entrepreneurial types whipped everyone up into a frenzy with new ideas. Increasingly, talented managers are being asked to do both, in other words be personally agile. One day they could be talking to investors, the next focused on sticking to a budget.” Personally agile CEOs do exist – in Gorman’s view Paul Polman at Unilever and Paul Bulcke of Nestlé are good examples – but in most cases top managers focus on building an agile team rather

than being completely agile themselves. This means recognising where their weaknesses lie and making sure there is someone on the team to carry the slack. While research might show that larger organisations tend to be less agile, Gorman believes this doesn’t always hold true. “How close the decision-makers are to the problem is the real measure of a company’s agility. Multinational retailer Walmart is one example of a large organisation that can be fairly agile. Meanwhile, in some mid-sized companies, founders try to take too much control and there is not enough decentralisation. “When it comes to agility, don’t let company size blind you to what you really need to look at. For instance, people tend to look at innovation as this ‘other thing’, but within companies you need to keep it going in order to be agile and stay dynamic.” Co-founder of Irish training and consultancy organisation ThousandSeeds Mary Cronin adds to this view of Gorman’s: “Simply setting up a team dedicated to innovation is not being innovative – this is just another team where everybody thinks the same. When looking at building new companies as well as examining existing business models, we need to be careful going forward about how we actually innovate. There tends to be too much of a focus on products

Case study: Keenan healthier cattle and improved farming incomes. “We wanted to find a way of ensuring that the perfect mix that we had specified would be delivered, no matter what difficulties a farmer might be experiencing on the ground,” explains Keenan’s group marketing manager Michael Keogh. After initial tests were successfully conducted with farmers in Scotland, an exclusive agreement was signed between Keenan and Vodafone for the supply of the M2M SIMs carrying Pace technology. Vodafone M2M allows multiple devices to share information without the need for human intervention, using its mobile telecommunications network. The connectivity is now facilitating unprecedented levels of data analysis and control of the performance of dairy and beef herds for Keenan customers, enabling precise fine tuning of feed mixes, drawing on the contents of the largest feed efficiency database in the world. Verified results from more than 1,000 herds in the UK and France showed that the Keenan system increased feed efficiency by 10pc, while milk yields increased by 1.74kg per Co Carlow-based livestock feeding business Keenan introduced machine to machine (M2M) SIMs into its worldwide fleet of feeding

cow per day. Overall, almost 10,000 farmers in 25 countries are producing

machines recently and this has made a significant difference to its

more and better quality milk or beef from the same or less feed and

farming customers in Europe and North America.

increasing profits by wasting less.

Established in 1978, Keenan showed a determination from an early

Keogh notes that the M2M means Keenan’s customers don’t need

stage to be more than simply a supplier of farm machinery. It re-

to make a big investment in additional technology and it also takes

cognised that it was the accuracy and quality of the physical feed mix

away the possibility of misunderstandings created by language or

within the wagons that produced improved milk and beef production,

differences in terminology when working with farmers around the world.

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Future business in association with Vodafone

‘Simply setting up a team dedicated to innovation is not being innovative – this is just another team where everybody thinks the same’

in relation to reinvention or diversification,” she says. “We need to get people to think about really being customer centric as opposed to being organisation centric – to ask themselves ‘what are the unmet needs of our customers?’ and develop products based on that rather than selling products from the organisation out. “When a company isn’t customer centric, products are developed with lots of features in them that customers never wanted, which is why so many fail.” Cronin maintains that the key to being truly customer centric is knowledge transfer through observation and immersion. “Customers don’t know what they don’t know. The companies that are going to survive are the ones which have the whole

customer process set up around how they talk to them. It means when interviewing customers, they have to observe what they’re doing as opposed to what they tell them.” To illustrate this point, she notes that when Henry Ford interviewed people about what they would like in terms of transport, they answered ‘faster horses of course’. “In fact he created the motor car. He analysed what the driver wanted as opposed to designing the faster horse. Words were translated into insights through combining his knowledge and the customers’ knowledge. Companies that don’t constantly question themselves on how they create value for their customers will have a difficulty in surviving over the long term.”

Case study: Parcel Motel end of 2010. Further to meeting the supplier, agreeing the technical specification and raising the necessary finance, we had the first one on the ground within 18 months.” One of the added features introduced at the time of launch that has proved popular was the creation of a virtual UK address, which allows customers in Ireland to avail of cheaper UK shipping prices. There are now 8,000 Parcel Motel lockers at 100 locations around Ireland. Tuohy says 110,000 people are registered to use the service and this is growing at a rate of 1,000 new registrations every week. “We were the first to market with this concept, so even if somebody does introduce something similar it will be compared to Parcel Motel,” says Tuohy. “Business agility really has to be at the

John Tuohy, managing director, Nightline

core of what we do at Nightline. Our main competitors are overseas postal operators with very deep pockets, so to maintain our

Having co-founded parcel delivery service Nightline in 1992, managing

market position we have to be resourceful. Our next move will be to ex-

director John Tuohy observed four years ago that consumers ordering

pand Parcel Motel into other markets – we have received expressions

online needed more options for purchasing and returning items to

of interest in the idea from Europe, Asia and North America.”

retailers. “A lot of our retail clients that ship parcels were also asking us to look at more sustainable and cost effective ways of delivering, while at the same time enhancing the customer experience,” he recalls. “I saw the locker we now use at a trade show in Copenhagen at the

Now employing 700 people, including 100 in Northern Ireland, Nightline delivers one million parcels every month. “We continued to experience growth even during the recession. Our workforce has increased by 50pc since 2008 and our turnover should reach around €50m in 2014, 10pc up on 2013,” notes Tuohy.

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VIEW There is an inextricable link between investment in ICT and company agility and innovativeness


f the recession has taught us anything it is that businesses must have the ability to be nimble and to change when competitors and the marketplace are changing,” says Anne Sheehan, enterprise director, Vodafone Ireland. Information and communications technology (ICT) has become a key part of company strategy, both in terms of investment in the right infrastructure in order to have the ability to react to change as well as actually dictating how businesses reach their customers. Sheehan continues: “This requires having the right foundations in place in terms of ICT infrastructure – in other words, an infrastructure that is agile and flexible.” Those companies that have invested in ICT tend to be the most agile and innovative. Large corporates are leading the way in this regard as they can make big investments to make sure they are adopting technologies to keep ahead of the market. “European research by Vodafone has also shown that while SMEs in Ireland are holding their own in terms of agility, they are ahead in social networking, mobile voice and data and websites, while they tend to lag behind in the adoption of cloud and unified communications,” she says. “In our experience, whether SMEs adopt new technologies has a lot to do with confidence levels – they need to be reassured that it makes sense and there is a return on investment.” Some Irish businesses are showing themselves at the forefront in terms of agility. Brennans Bread, for example, has transformed a huge part of its business in the past year without making a massive investment. Its core business is making bread and distributing its products to retailers using 260 vans on a daily basis. Previously, drivers filled out delivery dockets manually and either dropped them back or posted them to headquarters (HQ), meaning retailers were not being billed in real time. “We consulted with Brennans Bread on how this process could be made easier and developed a smartphone app in conjunction

with the company which allows the delivery man to tick all the products delivered online, report to HQ and this is then integrated into the back office,” Sheehan explains. “The project has been a game changer for Brennans Bread. It was delivered in a two month period and there is a clear return on investment – it’s about simple technology addressing a real business need.” With the data and online explosion, businesses are changing their work practices in response to the demand from their customers who want solutions quickly, easily and online - at any time of the day. Organisations need to be geared for this, which means employees not being tied to the office and having the ability to use data quickly on their chosen device and being able to make decisions on the spot. Sheehan also cites Dawn Meats as one company which responded to this trend. “Dawn Meats has a number of different plants in the south east and is involved in a fast-paced industry supplying high profile customers. “Employees were travelling between plants and the company was losing a lot of time in terms of getting decisions made. It introduced video conferencing, which took out the need to travel and allowed real-time decision making.” Hand in hand with the desire to make decisions in real time is the massive appetite that exists for analytics. This has led to huge growth in ‘machine to machine’ (M2M), which refers to technologies that allow both wireless and wired systems to communicate with other devices of the same type. Involving putting intelligent SIMs into devices and tracking information, M2M is all around us, from handheld terminals in airline flights, to fridges monitoring temperature to SIMs in cars measuring the amount of petrol being used. “Before long most devices will incorporate intelligent SIMs and more and more companies will be adopting M2M technologies,” Sheehan predicts.

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Future business in association with Vodafone


BUSINESS Businesses striving to be agile and dynamic in today’s world need to be aware of key consumer and technology trends


o-founder of events ticketing company Eventbrite Renaud Visage identified key trends currently affecting businesses and requiring them to be agile at the Digital Ireland Forum held by Silicon Republic in Dublin recently. The first is the rise of a new generation known as the ‘Millennials’. Aged between 18 and 34, these people grew up with the internet and are used to receiving information on their phones and tablets. “They’re connected and like to chat online. Coming to maturity, they’ll become the main audience for many businesses,” he explained. “Millenials have had a critical impact on our business. For this group, experiences are valued beyond anything else. They want to live in the moment, have fun and share experiences with friends and the world. “We realised we had to address this group in a way that made sense to them and give them the tools they needed to fully engage with their peers. We took that behaviour change from the new generation and incorporated it into our branding with the tag line ‘Live more’.” Visage calls the second trend ‘mobile everything’, citing Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends Report, which highlights the unprecedented adoption of mobile phones and tablets, both of which have risen much faster than anything new ever released before. “Mobile is fast becoming the primary screen for people, instead of a desktop. The mobile revolution is here to stay, so businesses have to account for it and build the products people expect to interact with.” When Eventbrite started out in 2006, smartphones weren’t an issue. Visage said that as soon as they went on sale the company examined how it could make them useful to its clients, ie event

organisers. “The first product we launched, a couple of years after the iPhone came out, was a cloud-based, real-time entry management app that organisers could use instead of pen and paper and a manual checklist,” he said. “Once smartphones became more ubiquitous we started to create apps for attendees allowing them, for example, to browse events nearby. We also tasked the engineering team with making every page responsive – in other words pages are designed to present data depending on the size of the device being used.” The third trend Visage discussed at the conference in Dublin’s Digital Hub was ‘social commerce’. “Sharing has become the new norm. Your digital feed is a representation of yourself. Businesses need to give people whatever they need to make it easy for them to share what they want to share. Making things easy to send around creates a social currency for your brand. “It’s a reality, for example, that people are sharing during and after an event such as a concert. An Eventbrite report has shown that those attending an event via a social network are three times more likely to share about it than anyone else. The impact on business of this is that an individual Facebook share brings on average US$2.6 in additional business to organisers. This is the real power of social commerce.” Eventbrite came about when Visage and the other co-founders Julia and Kevin Hartz realised over eight years ago that no acceptable solution existed for small and medium-sized organisers to sell tickets online. “People had to resort to managing lists themselves and mail merging and they couldn’t take payments. Ticket sales were a pain to manage. We started finding a solution in 2006 and have managed the sale of more than 200 million tickets since then,” he noted.

‘Mobile is fast becoming the primary screen for people, instead of a desktop’ Irish Director Autumn 2014

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Renaud Visage, co-founder of Eventbrite

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IoD member profile



John Tuohy is CEO of Nightline Logistics Group. He has been a member of the IoD since 2010

What is your current role and what does it involve? I am the CEO of the Nightline Logistics Group, Ireland’s largest independent delivery company. That entails overseeing the strategy and development of the business both within Ireland and abroad to ensure that we continue to grow. Tell us a bit about Nightline and its background Nightline was formed by myself and Dave Field, the company’s COO, in 1992. Even though we started with just €10,000 working capital, we had a vision of how we could offer a distinct and better service than many of our more established competitors. The enormous growth in popularity of e-commerce in recent years may have generated significant opportunities, parcel volumes and business partnerships, but we have additional strengths in warehouse management, business post and international freight, which are represented in the constituent divisions of the Nightline Group. What are the company’s main challenges at the moment and going forward? Being an indigenous Irish business, we face stiff competition from multinational carriers that can subsidise their operations here. Trying to grow our business against that backdrop means having to keep a close eye on costs, with labour being one key component. We have found that as the economy has recovered, the employment market has become fluid once again, making talent retention a priority. As we look to grow our business both in terms of volumes and into new territories, we increase the amount of potential competition and, therefore, there is a need for us to remain innovative and on our toes.

make suggestions that will propel Nightline forward. What is your philosophy in business? It’s all about fostering an environment in which we can continue to evolve, grow and learn. I am constantly looking for new ideas and new viewpoints – from inside and outside the business – which I think can help me and Nightline to develop. What has been your biggest lesson in business? If pushed, I would have to say that it is trusting my instincts. By doing a job, you develop a sense of what works for clients, consumers and Nightline as a business. We have taken some bold steps – choosing to create our own IT platform, known as SmartShip, rather than buy something ‘off the shelf’ or launching Parcel Motel, our nationwide locker terminal network – which have paid off because of our preparation and understanding of the customer and the industry. What have been your biggest successes and/or failures in business? The biggest success is undoubtedly creating a business which continues to grow in a sustainable, novel fashion more than two decades after it was launched. The biggest failure was a fire at our first offices only six weeks after we began trading. We didn’t have an insurance policy and so had to start again, almost from scratch.

What’s your own career background? Prior to launching Nightline, Dave and I had both worked for several years in the parcel delivery industry for other firms.

Who or what are your main influences? There are many individuals whose thinking or approach to business have inspired me to change what I – or we – do for the better. They include the likes of Anne Heraty, the first female CEO of an Irish company floated on the London Stock Exchange, Prof John Teeling, a serial and immensely capable entrepreneur and, outside of Ireland, Richard Branson, whose wonderful autobiography I have read recently.

Can you define your leadership style? Mine is very much an ‘open door’ approach. Whilst Dave and I might be ultimately responsible for plotting the direction in which the company moves forward, we have built a very capable team across the various levels and facilities that we operate. Whilst I consider myself to have a good eye for detail, I know that it would be impossible to manage everything. I trust my colleagues to do their job and to

Do you have plans for the future – inside or outside Nightline – that you’d like to share? Nightline has a number of strategic developments for the coming year to continue the process of growth – both in an Irish context and beyond. Beyond that, I’ve just passed my motorbike test. Whether with Nightline or alone and on two wheels, I regard the future as something of an open road and I plan to capitalise fully on it.

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IoD member profile


‘I am constantly looking for new ideas and new viewpoints – from inside and outside the business – which I think can help me and Nightline to develop’

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sector profile


skills Irish Director Autumn 2014

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sector profile


The information and communications technology (ICT) sector in Ireland is thriving, with its strong mix of multinational and indigenous companies, writes Sorcha Corcoran stroll around Dublin’s vibrant Docklands district, home to Ireland’s No 1 exporter Google’s EMEA headquarters, provides a taste of what’s been happening in Ireland’s ICT sector over the past 10 years or so. It has been characterised by increasing investment by multinationals, climbing exports, job creation and innovation to such a degree that Ibec association ICT Ireland is confident that this country has the potential to become “a global ICT powerhouse”. It expresses this belief in a report published this year entitled ‘The Global Technology Hub’, which


states that Ireland has one of the highest concentrations of ICT activity and employment in the OECD with “an enviable history of attracting and retaining many of the world’s leading technology companies”. Ireland’s ICT track record, technology base, 12.5pc corporate tax rate, 25pc research and development (R&D) tax credit, top quality talent, English speaking base and EU/eurozone membership have all contributed to this. The technology industry as a whole in Ireland employs over 105,000 people across an array of diverse companies, including leading technology multinationals, indigenous start-ups, Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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sector profile

telecommunications firms, scaling software companies and digital innovators. A sub-sector of this, the ICT sector employs 37,000 people and is responsible for exports of around €50bn a year. All of the top 10 global ICT companies and nine of the top 10 global software companies have a significant Irish presence. Global leaders such as Intel, HP, IBM, Microsoft and Apple have long-established operations here and have been joined by newer

leading-edge players, including Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Amazon, PayPal, eBay and Twitter – so called ‘born on the internet’ companies. In recent multinational developments, IBM announced the opening of a €20m European digital sales centre in Dublin in September – its largest multi-language client engagement centre in the world, bringing together a specialist IT salesforce working in 19 languages for clients in 21 countries.

‘The Galileo board, designed at Intel’s plant in Leixlip, is the type of development we need the technology sector as a whole to be pointing towards”

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sector profile


Apple has been the tech multinational grabbing most headlines since the European Commission announced in June it was going to investigate the iPhone maker’s tax arrangements in Ireland. It remains to be seen what the effects will be of the commission’s letter to the Irish Government on 30 September explaining why it believes Apple was given special tax deals by the Revenue here in 1991 and 2007. Whatever the outcome, there is no doubt about the importance of Apple’s presence here. In Cork since 1980, it has grown its workforce to roughly 4,000 employees. Most recently, in April 2012, it announced plans to expand the Cork facility, creating 500 new jobs. As well as a weighty multinational presence in Ireland, there is a scaling indigenous technology sector. This sector alone employs over 30,000 people with total sales of over €2bn per annum. The ecosystem has been further enhanced by a growing interest from gaming companies, with the likes of Big Fish, Havok, DemonWare, PopCap, Zynga, Riot Games and Jolt all having a significant presence here. “Ireland has a strong mix of multinational and indigenous companies, quite a few of which have achieved considerable success globally such as Openet, Realex, CarTrawler and

Skills challenge While a skills demand continues to exist in Ireland’s technology sector, which has grown by 30,000 jobs to 105,000 in the past five or six years, things are improving. For a start, there has been a continuing increase in the uptake of higher level Leaving Certificate maths, with 27.3pc of students taking this option compared with less than 16pc three years ago. Over 72pc of students who took the option this year achieved a minimum of grade C, suggesting that greater numbers of students are capable of studying higher level. “There is a strong pipeline of people coming through the educational system as more students are taking on higher level maths and choosing tech-related courses at third level. This has improved year on year since bonus points for higher level maths were brought in,” says Paul Sweetman, director of ICT Ireland and the Irish Software Association. “Skills shortages in the tech sector are a global issue and Ireland is performing better than other countries in terms of addressing this. We can turn this into a competitive advantage.”

‘Ireland is at the start of a very big opportunity and we shouldn’t miss out on it’

Guiding lights for Ireland’s ICT sector

Paul Sweetman, director


of ICT Ireland and the

In August of this year, the Internet of Things overtook big data as the

Irish Software Associ-

world’s most hyped technology in a Gartner report entitled ‘Hype Cycle

ation has identified a

for Emerging Technologies’.

number of long-term

drivers of the ICT

Things. A lot of services are tied in with it and it is leading to consider-

sector in Ireland that are

able cross-sector work, particularly between the tech sector and the

coming into prominence

food and drink and pharmaceutical sectors,” says Sweetman.


The main one is the

and this trend ties back to the Internet of Things and the growth of

‘Internet of Things’,

service-driven applications. The use of data as a tool and resource for

which has been defined

innovation is a space to watch for Ireland. We are well placed to make

by IT research company

the most of that.”

Gartner as “the network

Mobile internet is another key driver of the ICT sector globally high-

of physical objects that

lighted by Sweetman. “We are now seeing the start of this becoming

contain embedded tech-

mainstream with the advent of near field communications and Apple

nology to communicate

moving into mobile payments with the iPhone. Mobile internet is really

and sense or interact

coming to the fore and will show exponential growth.”

“A lot of companies in Ireland are getting involved in the Internet of

“Big data and the cloud are continuing to grow in importance

with their internal states or the external environ-

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sector profile

Version 1,” says Paul Sweetman, director of ICT Ireland and the Irish Software Association. “The software sector is powering ahead with annual double- digit growth over the past five years. The recent acquisition of Waterfordbased FeedHenry by open source company Red Hat for Ð63.5m, as well as Dublin-based mobile technology company Accuris securing US$15m in a new investment round, is further evidence of the sector’s strength.” Opportunities now exist for greater collaboration between the indigenous technology sector and the burgeoning multinational technology companies, he argues. “We are also well placed to develop collaboration between the ICT sector and other sectors such as food and drink, pharmaceuticals and financial services. All of this collaboration will allow the technology community to be greater than the sum of its parts, enabling the country to become a true global technology hub.” Investment in R&D An important aspect of the sector’s ability to reach this status will be to maximise the investment in research and development (R&D) by the State, individual companies and through link-ups with researchers at third and fourth level. Ireland’s largest initiative to support industry-led research, the Technology Centres Programme, is already bearing fruit with numerous projects completed; spin-out companies in the pipeline and real engagement achieved between industry and third-level researchers. Jointly delivered by Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland, the programme brings industry and researchers together to collaborate on developing new knowhow to maintain and grow industrial activity in Ireland. The Government is investing around Ð100m in the programme, currently matched with a 30pc contribution from industry. Around 200 IDA client members are now on board including Intel, Google and Microsoft. “We need to make sure that industry is aware of programmes such as the Technology Centres one, as well as Science Foundation Ireland supported initiatives. There is an opportunity for multinationals’ EMEA operations here to engage in more solid R&D, for example in the data space,” says Sweetman. “In addition, people forget Ireland has a strong track record in hitech manufacturing and there are strong companies here involved in that area with several thousand people employed. “The Galileo board, designed at Intel’s plant in Leixlip, is the type of development we need the technology sector as a whole to be pointing towards.” The first Irish designed and developed microchip, the Galileo board, received the ‘Design in Ireland’ award at the Irish Technology Leadership Group’s seventh Annual Silicon Valley Global Awards at Stanford University on 8 October. The Galileo chip is a Quark-powered Arduino-compatible board that makes hi-tech design easy for the manufacturer and educational communities. It is a part of a new highly integrated lower-power product family that extends Intel’s reach into the Internet of Things and wearable markets. Emblazoned on the Galileo board are the words ‘Designed in Ireland’ reflecting the fact that both the Intel

Quark product and the Intel Galileo board were designed in Ireland. All things considered, Ireland’s status as a global technology hub appears to be intact and poised for further growth, with Dublin having been described as ‘Europe’s Silicon Valley’ by a number of international commentators. Sweetman welcomes the label, but says it almost encourages us to rest on our laurels: “Ireland is at the start of a very big opportunity and we shouldn’t miss out on it. We must push to make it the most attractive location for technology talent; develop relationships between companies and out into wider sectors and continue investment in every aspect.

Exporting prowess Google Ireland was named the No 1 exporting company in the Top 250 Exporters in Ireland and Northern Ireland report for 2014, released by the Irish Exporters Association in association with Investec in September. Moving up one place from its previous year’s ranking, the internet giant recorded a 36.5pc increase in export turnover to reach Ð17bn this year. Google was followed by Microsoft Ireland (with export turnover of Ð15bn); Johnson & Johnson (with Ð10.5bn); Dell (with Ð8.5bn); and Smurfit Kappa Group (with Ð7.3bn). The ranking, compiled by StubbsGazette based on company accounts, shows that the information communications and technology (ICT) sector continues to be the strongest performing in Ireland. Total exports from the sector within the Top 250 grew by 3pc in the past year and, of the Top 20 companies listed, eight of them are focused within the ICT arena.

Ireland’s technology sector at a glance ■ Exports worth Ð72bn per annum (40pc of total national exports)

■ Ireland is the second largest exporter of computer and IT services in the world

■ The top 10 ‘born on the internet’ companies have operations here

■ Three of the top three global security software companies have operations here

■ Over 105,000 people are employed in the technology sector in Ireland, 35,000 of which are in ICT

■ A burgeoning tech start-up scene

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The Irish economy is one that can “turn on a dime”, believes HSBC Ireland CEO Alan Duffy



ne of the observations HSBC always makes about Ireland is that its economy can “turn on a dime” because of its size and the fact that it exports 95pc of what it produces, according to HSBC Ireland CEO Alan Duffy. Ireland’s score rose by two points from 117 to 119 in the latest HSBC trade confidence index published in September and is now the highest among all the European countries surveyed. Around 70pc of survey respondents expect trade volumes to increase over the next six months, up from 65pc in the last survey in March. HSBC said relatively strong economic growth in the US and the UK will be key drivers for Ireland’s trade outlook in the near term. Chemicals and pharmaceuticals are set to play the biggest role in driving export growth in both the short and medium term, while Ireland’s agri-business sector is predicted to grow by 40pc by 2030. Ireland’s overseas sales are expected to remain concentrated on other high income economies, such as the US and UK, but the report also states that Ireland’s exposure to fast-growing emerging economies will need to increase if Irish firms are to fully exploit opportunities further afield. The fastest growing markets for Irish exports are expected to be China, Vietnam and Malaysia, with double-digit export growth to these countries expected out to 2030. “As a dynamic and very open economy, trade prospects look

positive for Ireland in the short and medium term, aided by robust expansions in the US and UK economies,” says Duffy. “Greater endeavours to diversify trade towards fast-growing emerging economies would boost this picture further and our expertise in high value-added manufacturing should help in this respect, as incomes in emerging countries continue to climb.” In October, the Economic and Social Research Institute predicted that Ireland’s gross national product (GNP) would grow by 4.9pc in 2014 and 5.2pc in 2015 and Ibec raised its GNP growth forecast for 2014 from 2.5pc to 5.4pc based, it said, on “remarkably positive” trends right across the economy. In its latest Quarterly Economic Outlook, the business group said “spectacular growth” would make Ireland the fastest growing economy in Europe this year. HSBC’s most recent prediction for GNP growth for 2014 was 2.5pc last July and Duffy says that any revision made to this would be upwards at this point. “We are witnessing that the speed of economic recovery in Ireland has caught analysts externally and internally by surprise. What’s driving things at the moment is the ‘return of the consumer’,” says Duffy. “In conjunction with a strong performance on the exporting side, consumers are starting to spend again which is stimulating the domestic economy. There has been a significant increase in sales of big ticket items; car sales are booming.

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‘As a dynamic and very open economy, trade prospects look positive for Ireland in the short and medium term, aided by robust expansions in the US and UK economies’

Next FDI wave Duffy believes Ireland continues to have a strong reputation internationally and we need to shift our attention now to the next wave of foreign direct investment (FDI) and where it is likely to come from. “Our reputation has benefited from the pain the sovereign has gone through in cutting the deficit level, cutting back spending and the austerity drive and coming out the far end. Bond yields are at very low levels - which means the financial markets like what we’re doing. “It is important to note that even in the depths of the downturn that the pace of FDI did not slow. Ireland has a well worn reputation with the US and more developed markets in this regard. The next wave of FDI won’t necessarily come from developed markets. It is more likely to come from the likes of China and India. “Investors based in the East have invested a huge amount in Europe already. We’ve already seen Chinese investment in the

aircraft leasing sector in Ireland and with the removal of the milk quota next year, our world-class agri sector will be of major interest as diets change in China and more dairy is consumed. “If you look at what Chinese investors have already done in Europe, they have shown an interest in utilities and wind energy generation, so an opportunity could lie in those areas also.” Duffy says the new residency rules for foreign companies announced in Budget 2015 on 14 October provide clarity to investors and should not have ill effects on FDI flows going forward. Minister for Finance Noonan said he was abolishing the ability of companies to use the ‘Double Irish’ by changing our residency rules to require all companies registered in Ireland to also be tax resident. The new laws will take effect from 1 January 2015 for new companies and transitional arrangements will apply to companies already incorporated in Ireland lasting until 31 December 2020.

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doing business in Australia

With a trade mission to Australia in September seeing a total of €10m in contracts being signed by Irish companies, the only way is up. Sorcha Corcoran reports



he economic relationship between Ireland and Australia is stronger now than at any time in the respective nations’ histories, delivering two-way trade of more than AUD$2.8bn a year, according to Paul Burfield, director Australia/New Zealand at Enterprise Ireland. Australia recently recorded its 23rd consecutive year of economic growth, largely thanks to its abundance of agricultural and mineral resources. Its attractiveness as an investment destination is based on this long-standing economic resilience, sound regulatory framework for business and stable political system, notes Burfield. “The Australian region has recorded remarkable and prolonged growth in exports by Enterprise Ireland client companies from a level beneath €90m in 2004 to almost €300m in 2013 – making it the second largest market in the Asia Pacific region in terms of total

exports and the largest destination market for non-food exports.” There are over 140 Enterprise Ireland client companies active across Australia, with 92 having a physical presence in the market. “The AUD$1.2tr national economy offers Irish exporters invaluable security, especially after the economic turmoil in the global economy,” says Burfield. “As the world’s 13th largest economy, it has the world’s fifth highest per capita income and the second highest human development index globally. Australia ranks highly in many international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, health, education, economic freedom, and the protection of civil liberties and political rights.” The skill base of Australia’s highly educated and multicultural workforce represents another major asset, Burfield believes – one that is being developed with injections of new funding to promote innovation and research and development.

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doing business in Australia


‘Australia ranks highly in many international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, health, education, economic freedom, and the protection of civil liberties and political rights’

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doing business in Australia

‘Looking forward, the expansion of the healthcare sector in Australia is providing significant opportunities for Irish companies targeting their world-class capability to this burgeoning and innovation-hungry industry’ Strong services industry Focusing on sectors, although Australia’s energy and mineral resources are world renowned, the services industry comprises about 70pc of the country’s GDP. “Australia’s advanced services sector offers great opportunities, especially in financial and professional services, clean energy technologies, and infrastructure,” Burfield notes. “Almost 70pc of Irish company exports to Australia are derived from the software and services sector. The capability of Irish software companies across the financial, telecoms, travel and IT for healthcare sectors is well recognised by the local market and there is a distinct receptiveness towards Irish innovation in these sectors. “Looking forward, the expansion of the healthcare sector in Australia is providing significant opportunities for Irish companies targeting their world-class capability to this burgeoning and innovation-hungry industry.” This was evident during the trade mission to Australia in September, which involved a total of €10m in contracts being signed by Irish companies. For example, Cork company Lincor Solutions formally signed an agreement with Hills Health Solutions providing exclusive rights to its patient engagement technology in Australia and New Zealand and Dublin-headquartered software provider Oneview Healthcare agreed deals with two hospitals in Australia with a combined value of around AUD$5m. Over the past three years Enterprise Ireland has directed significant resources into supporting the entry and expansion of Irish companies into the mining and resources rich regions of Western Australia and Queensland. “Significant opportunities exist for Irish companies with strong engineering and construction capability across this market and Enterprise Ireland opened a new office in Perth, Western Australia in June 2014 to better support the market development activities of our client base,” notes Burfield. “We are extremely positive about the outlook for Irish engineering and construction-related companies to develop significant export scale in the Australian market.”

Challenges facing Irish exporters While opportunities abound, there are a number of challenges facing Irish companies in accessing and servicing the Australian market. First and foremost, the nine to 11 hour time zone differences and the lack of proximity create challenges in communicating with

Sláinte Healthcare’s Vitro to be implemented in Victoria

L–R:Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton; Andrew Murphy, CEO, Sláinte Healthcare; Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland; and Mark Doran, national CEO, Calvary Health Care Sláinte Healthcare agreed a deal to provide Calvary Health Care in Australia with software to replace paper patient charts during the trade mission to the market in September. Its second deal in Australia, it involves the installation of its Vitro product in Calvary’s Bethlehem Hospital in Victoria. The product enables doctors and administrators to operate in a paper-free environment by capturing complex clinical data electronically. “Sláinte Healthcare’s software Vitro will take Bethlehem Hospital in Victoria from paper to paperless in just nine months, transforming the way we operate,” said Mark Doran, national CEO of Calvary Health Care. “Vitro’s Rapid Implementation model has meant we are now able to capture patient data electronically, using the forms familiar to our clinicians with little change management required.” Vitro is currently being used in hospitals in Australia, the Middle East and Ireland. It is also being used by the international charity Operation Smile, which works in over 60 countries worldwide. “Healthcare services throughout the world are moving towards electronic patient records and paperless patient management systems,” said Sláinte Healthcare chief executive Andrew Murphy. “The popularity of Vitro has contributed substantially towards the growth of Sláinte Healthcare. Since I set up the company in 2006 we have achieved a growth rate of 1,639pc and our products are now in use by over 40 healthcare providers worldwide. Murphy is a nominee in this year’s EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2014. Sláinte Healthcare was ranked third in Deloitte’s 50 fastest growing companies for 2013 and in the top 100 of the Technology Fast 500 EMEA 2013.

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doing business in Australia


Leading Edge Group focuses on partnership approach Further to establishing a local office in Sydney last February, Irish consultancy and training firm Leading Edge Group is currently finalising consulting and training contracts worth over AUD$200,000 in Sydney and Melbourne. It signed a major ‘Lean’ initiative with the Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne during the trade mission in September. Country manager for the Australian business Kieran Ryan explained that the contract with the Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne will involve the delivery of a full suite of Lean training programmes to a cross-section of the hospital’s staff in association with the Australian Healthcare & Hospitals Association (AHHA). “This will create a core group of experts working on projects to

L–R: Dr Edel Walsh, UCC; Garry Bogue, group finance director, Leading Edge Group; Joe Aherne, CEO, Leading Edge Group; Stephen Clancy, UCC; and Emily Aherne, UCC

improve the cost, quality and delivery of services to their patients and other stakeholders.” Leading Edge Group CEO Joe Aherne said he was “thrilled” with

According to Aherne, Leading Edge Group has experienced rapid expansion in recent years and now has offices in the UK, Canada and

the response it had received to date in both the healthcare and non-

Australia, mainly working in partnership with a number of academic

healthcare sectors in Australia.

and professional bodies to provide internationally accredited Lean

“Our relationship with the AHHA has been instrumental to our

certification programmes.

continuing success in healthcare,” he noted.

and accessing the physical market to adequately service prospects

Reach of MyHomeReach extended in Melbourne Co Kildare company HealthComms signed a deal with Catholic Homes to expand the scope of its ‘MyHomeReach’ technology across additional aged care facilities and retirement villages in the Greater Melbourne area in Australia recently. Catholic Homes is a not-for-profit organisation providing accommodation, residential care, community care and retirement living accommodation choices for over 1,300 older people. Available across a variety of touchscreen and mobile platforms, HealthComms’ MyHomeReach solution enables the care recipient to stay in constant contact with a network of both formal and informal carers that they nominate themselves while staying in their own home. HealthComms was set up as a company in 2011 and launched MyHomeReach in Melbourne in November 2013 as part of a pilot project

and customers from both an additional cost and time management perspective. Despite the “tyranny of distance”, Irish companies must still invest a similar of attention to developing relationships and business in Australia as they would nearer to home markets that are distinctly more accessible, advises Burfield. “Our general rule of thumb is that senior executives of Irish companies serious about developing the Australian market must physically visit it and meet customers and prospects at least quarterly – as they would do for their UK customers for example.” Choice of the right route to market is also crucial, Burfield adds. “The appointments of agents and distributors may have some advantages in terms of a lower cost method of market access. But such relationships still require a similar degree of market support by Irish companies and ultimately get in the way of the relationship an Irish company should have directly with their end customer. “Given the distance from Ireland, many companies feel that by simply appointing an agent or distributor they have satisfied their market entry requirements – however agents and distributors in Australia often require as much servicing as direct sales teams to be successful.”

with Catholic Homes, which aims to address common challenges in relation to the care of older people such as social connectedness. “The use of devices such as tablets and mobile phones will enable

Australia – economic indicators

clients to maintain contact with a network of both formal and informal carers,” said CEO of Catholic Homes Greg Pullen. “To date Catholic Homes has successfully trialled the MyHomeReach programme with 40 participants in their own homes with results shown to prolong independent living, improve a client’s sense of security and assist with general well-being.”

■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

GDP: AUD$1.5 tr, 13th largest in the world GDP growth: 2.5–5pc over the past 10 years (2.5pc in 2013) Population: 22 million Exports from Ireland to Australia: AUD$1.5bn (2012/13) Growth sectors: services, mining, technology, healthcare Unemployment rate: 6.2pc (June 2014)

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Recently enacted legislation makes it essential for businesses to become whistleblower ready, writes Ciara McLoughlin

Blowing the

WHISTLE reland’s new whistleblowing legislation The Protected Disclosures Act, 2014 was enacted on 15 July 2014. The legislation has been eagerly awaited and represents a new standard of international best practice for employers and whistleblowers in Ireland. At its launch, Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin described the legislation as providing the best whistleblowing protection in the world; he has also spoken of it standing “shoulder to shoulder with the best in class internationally”. In light of this fanfare, and in order to live up to expectations set, Irish businesses need to ensure that they are whistleblowing ready. There is existing legislation protecting whistleblowers in certain areas such as health and competition. However, this new legislation will cover all sectors and will provide more protection than any of the previous legislation. Recent high-profile media stories have served to highlight the absence of a strong whistleblowing culture in Ireland and this Act certainly appears to be an attempt to address this. It will require a significant cultural shift for Irish businesses to become more whistleblowing friendly. The legislation, by encouraging workers to report to their employer in the first instance and by requiring the employer to facilitate this occurring, is designed to be the first step in the introduction of a more userfriendly regime. The Act protects workers from being penalised from disclosing information regarding ‘relevant wrongdoings’, which include criminal offences, failure to comply with a legal obligation,


miscarriages of justice, threats to the health and safety of the environment, improper use of public funds, as well as the destruction or concealment of information related to any of these wrongdoings. It covers a wide variety of ‘workers’, including employees, former employees, contractors, agency workers, trainees and members of An Garda Síochana.

Tiered disclosure The Act provides for a tiered disclosure regime. The first tier in the disclosure regime is internal, ie to the employer or some other responsible person. Clearly this will be the preferred route of disclosure for most employers as it allows them the opportunity to crisis manage the situation, preventing or limiting damage to its business. In order to benefit from the protection of the Act, it is necessary for employees to have a reasonable belief that they are disclosing a relevant wrongdoing that they discovered through work. Of note is the fact that to attract protection for disclosure to an employer, the motivation of the employee is irrelevant. This mirrors the situation in the UK where the ‘good faith’ requirement was removed from whistleblowing legislation in June 2013 following a series of cases where employees had made valid disclosures, but failed in their unfair dismissal claims because their employers were able to show that the employee’s primary motivation was to discredit their employer. The good faith requirement had become a deterrent to whistleblowing. Clearly the Irish Government feared a similar concern amongst employees here, particularly in a culture already unused to whistleblowing or to positive experiences

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‘Becoming whistleblowing ready is essential because the challenges of getting it wrong are serious’

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of coming forward. The second tier of disclosure is to a prescribed person. An example of this would be to a regulator. Where a worker chooses to disclose in this manner the whistleblower must reasonably believe the information disclosed and any allegation contained in it to be substantially true. Disclosure can also be made to a minister (if they work in the public sector) or a legal advisor. Finally, and the least desirable tier for employers, is wider public disclosure, which includes disclosure to the media. In order for the employee to benefit from protection in this scenario they would have to reasonably believe the disclosure to be substantially true and that the disclosure was not made for personal gain. They would also have to be in a position to demonstrate that they reasonably believed that they could not disclose it to their employer or to a regulator. It is therefore in an employer’s best interests to make it easy for employees to disclose relevant wrongdoings internally. Becoming whistleblowing ready is essential because the challenges of getting it wrong are serious. One of the most striking features of the legislation is the maximum award of five years’ remuneration for dismissal on grounds having made a protected disclosure. There is also no service requirement in order to bring a claim on this ground. When compared with the two years’ maximum award under existing unfair dismissal legislation, this sends a very clear message to Irish employers that dismissing employees for whistleblowing will not be tolerated. Although the law is now in effect, it is retrospective and where

an employee has made a protected disclosure earlier this year or even last year, then they may be entitled to protection under the legislation. The Act also includes measures to protect the identity of whistleblowers: the default position is not to disclose the identity, with certain exceptions. One of the likely outcomes of the Act is that employers may see straightforward unfair dismissal claims relabelled as whistleblowing by those seeking to characterise grievances as topics covered by the legislation thus bringing them into scope for the maximum award. Unresolved or badly handled investigations followed by dismissal (for unrelated reasons) will likely form fertile ground for whistleblowing claims under the legislation. Putting a whistleblowing policy in place is the first step to getting it right. A well drafted policy should make it clear that the business takes malpractice seriously, and makes the distinction between whistleblowing and raising a grievance. The policy should be a live document. Communication and awareness of its contents are key to its successful operation. Training those tasked with receiving disclosures and how to respond when a concern is raised is also critical. It is this responsiveness that may steer the path of the investigation and influence whether it is a well handled matter or one that morphs from an unfair dismissal claim to a whistleblowing claim with all the attendant risks and challenges. Ciara McLoughlin is a senior associate in the employment team at A&L Goodbody.

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In association with

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Brought to you by

Media partner of the Responsible Business Forum

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CSR campaign


Relationship management Welcome to the second of our special reports on CSR – this one focusing on marketplace. Additional content can be viewed on www. sustainability. Marketplace covers how businesses manage their relationships with customers, suppliers and stakeholders. If you get it wrong costs to your business can be high – in recent years there have been a number of high-profile cases where reputation was damaged and businesses changed trajectory. Treating your suppliers fairly is not only doing the right thing but has a huge impact on how you and your brand are perceived by customers. As always, rather than dwell on mistakes from the past we look at best practice in the area and talk to business leaders we can all learn from. Those interviewed for this report include Carmel McQuaid from Marks & Spencer, Brendan Jennings from Deloitte, Donnchadh O’Leary from Edelman and Dave Murphy from PM Group. Thanks to all for their input. We are proud to be a media partner of Business in the Community’s upcoming Responsible Business Forum – taking place at Dublin Castle on 11 November. We also have a preview of the forum and highlight just some of those speaking on the day. Hope to see you there! Thanks again to our CSR campaign partners for their support – Friends First, PM Group, Shell and An Post. Our next special report published in our winter edition moves on to community – we would love to hear from you if you want to highlight the work done by your employees in the communities near and far. You can contact us at Sam Hobbs Managing director Business & Leadership Ph: +353 1 625 1425 Email: Irish Director is published by Business & Leadership Ltd Ph: +353 1 625 1400 Email: Address: Top Floor, Block 43B,Yeats Way, Park West Business Park,Nangor Road, Dublin 12 © Business and Leadership Ltd 2014

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How building trust can impact the bottom line Managing partner of Deloitte Ireland Brendan Jennings stresses the importance of getting the culture right

How Marks & Spencer is extending its Plan A commitments The spotlight will be on responsible and sustainable business practices

Providing pro-bono support is a key element of PM Group’s CSR programme Irish Director Special Report: CSR marketplace

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Level of


Business has the opportunity to drive the trust agenda going forward.


ith trust being a vital factor in informing buying decisions and motivating behaviour, an organisation’s ability to build and maintain trust levels across a range of indicators can have a significant impact on its bottom line and chances of surviving potential crises. Business is the second most trusted institution – after NGOs, but ahead of media and government – in Ireland in 2014, according to the most recent Edelman Trust Barometer. And Edelman associate director Donnchadh O’Leary believes business has the opportunity to drive the trust agenda going forward. He stresses the importance of ‘walking the walk’ across a range of attributes – treating employees well, listening to customers, acting responsibly in a crisis, creating high quality products, being ethical and transparency top the list as the most important among the general public – when trying to build or maintain trust. “It’s fine for firms to preach about all the good they’re doing and about how fantastic they are and how well they deal with customers, but if customers aren’t actually experiencing that in their interaction with that organisation, it’s a huge problem because it makes everything they’ve said look completely incredible,” he says. Digital and social media have obviously had a significant impact on how companies and customers now engage. “Social media has allowed customers to have a very influential voice,” says O’Leary. “That’s a whole new environment that companies have to struggle to be effective in. For older companies, they have a lot of changes to make. But companies that have grown up from start-up level in this new culture are embedding that in their organisation. This increases the pressure on the old guard because it makes these new companies much more effective in engaging with their customer base.”

Impacting the bottom line Research carried out by Edelman indicates that levels of trust

significantly affect the bottom line. In a 2011 study, 73pc of respondents said they had refused to buy products and services from a company that they didn’t trust. At the same time, 85pc of people said they had chosen to buy products and services from companies that they trusted. “So it’s quite clear that the more trusted that you are, the more chance you have of having your product or service bought versus a competing product that isn’t trusted,” O’Leary says. “In the same study, 75pc of people said they had recommended trusted products to friends or colleagues, while 67pc said they had criticised companies that they distrusted to a friend or colleague. “As well, 54pc of people said that they were willing to pay more for products or services from trusted companies. And 44pc of people said that they had shared positive opinions about a trusted company online, whereas 33pc said they shared negative opinions about a distrusted company online. So, it’s quite clear there that trust does count for a lot when it comes to a company’s bottom line.” Having higher levels of trust are also important for companies that experience issues or a crisis, O’Leary says. “Generally, reputation is almost an aggregate of everything you’ve done in the past, whereas trust really is about future expectations. If you can build high levels of trust, they will certainly help sustain you in a crisis or when you are experiencing an issue. If you have a very low level of trust and a crisis or issue hits, your ability to sustain that and continue to trade going forward is hugely reduced versus a company that is very well trusted.” O’Leary stresses the opportunity that exists for business in terms of becoming an authoritative voice for trust in society. “Business should be poised really to be on the upward curve in terms of trust levels and business is significantly more trusted than government,” he says. “There’s a really opportunity there for business to take the lead and almost drive the trust agenda in terms of openness and transparency and that kind of culture, especially now that the economy is turning around.” Special Report: CSR marketplace Irish Director

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Doing the

RIGHT THING Ensuring best practice in the area of the marketplace pillar of CSR often comes down to a number of factors, including the organisation’s culture, according to Deloitte Ireland managing partner Brendan Jennings


he marketplace element of CSR is complex, covering everything from product quality to sustainable supply chains and customer relations, and its impact varies depending on the nature of an organisation’s business. For Brendan Jennings, managing partner of Deloitte Ireland, having a culture of trying to do the right thing within and outside the organisation is the cornerstone of any attempt to achieve best practice in this area. For companies buying commodities from around the world and from different sources, visibility is an important point, he says. “What do you have to have in place to be able to get some sense of the source of inputs or who is supplying that through the whole value chain? That’s the bit that’s very challenging because when you start to drill down into that, there can be an awful lot of people supplying components into the various pieces of the jigsaw. “In my mind what becomes very important is that really close understanding of the supplier you’re dealing with,” says Jennings. He advises having a collaborative style with the main supplier. “That person knows what your expectation is from them and they then cascade that down to the people that supply into them. I suppose you’re hoping that cascades down further and everyone gets onto that particular agenda. Understanding the supplier of your key product is a fairly fundamental point.” Next up, he says, are the controls that need to be in place around the quality and the safety of the product and people’s ability to interfere with the product along the supply chain. “For certain products that becomes a fairly critical issue. If you’re into food and health, well-being, anything medical, then the robustness of controls around anybody’s ability to tamper with the product is a very important point. “Very large corporates probably can get their head around that a little bit. But when you get into a small company, there’s a limit to what it can do to track back through that value chain. So driving this whole topic within countries and within markets at a national level can help with that particular agenda.”

The response plan In any supply chain or any business process, there is always an associated risk, he says. “So it’s very difficult – and in fact uneconomic in a lot of cases – to completely eliminate risk out of business. One does one’s best in relation to these areas, but then I think what’s really important is that the corporate has a plan in place for when something does go wrong. What happens in the next hour or in the next day? If it’s a supplier issue, where do they go to get alternative supply? What actions do they need to take in relation to protecting their customers and their brand? It’s a bit like business interruption. You need to know when a hacker gets into the system at 2am, what happens next, what are the things you need to do to lock things down and protect the business, your customers and employees.” He says that organisations with a reputation for doing the right thing that respond quickly and in the right way will get more forgiveness from customers. “But you can’t keep doing that,” he warns. The increasing need for transparency is a positive thing, he says. “We live in a very connected world. The reality is that if something goes wrong today and you end up in the media, it’s a global advertisement. There’s no place to hide. And you’d have to say that is a good thing.” It impacts at two main levels, he says. “There are certain brand companies out there that are very, very sharply alert to that particular point because they are managing a brand and they understand the power of social media, or media in general, to damage their brand. “Outside of the big brand companies, there is a level of organisations that are not supplying brands to their customers directly but they are supplying products that go into big recognised brands. Very quickly they realise that the damage they can do to their company can be phenomenal. If you can’t get it right for that global company that has as one of its key objectives to protect its brand, well then you won’t be a supplier to them for very long and indeed it might cost you a bit of money. If they have to do a product recall they may well lay the cost of that at your door.”

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Setting the ethos from the start The good news for start-ups and smaller companies is that it is easier to adopt good practices at the beginning or in smaller organisations, he says. “One of the fundamental points in all of this is really the culture of the organisation. What way do people think? When people start to do something do they do it because this is what they believe, this is what’s right and that’s the ethos from the very start? The difficulty is that if you don’t do that, it can be very hard to change and you could have some very expensive lessons to learn along the way. “When you do damage to your business, it’s a slow process to rebuild your reputation. It doesn’t happen overnight. I think getting it right from the very start just makes so much sense. It might just require a little bit of extra process, a little bit of extra diligence at the start, but it pays. “Any company that starts off focusing on doing things right, even about how it plans its cash flows and how it manages its business, has a greater chance of being successful in the end. Those companies have good strategy, good vision and good planning processes. And that serves them well in the long term.”


As a guide, he notes that there is plenty of material available around codes of conduct, ethics, customer charters, mission statements and corporate culture. “But those things are not worth that much unless they’re real. You can write a code of conduct but if that’s not what the boss or the leadership team does or says it’s irrelevant really. It has to be seen by the organisation as important to the boss or the top three or four people, that they’re all driving the particular agenda. You can’t expect people down through the organisation to for example have a focus on quality if they don’t believe you’re focused on that. And then you become exposed, because your people become your weakest link in the end. And that’s true in all businesses. “So, codes are great and there’s lots of stuff out there but it has to start at what is real in the organisation. It’s all about leadership really – that tone at the top of the organisation. Unless you get that right, you could be wasting your time on some of the other points.”

Brendan Jennings will give the keynote address at BITC Ireland’s Responsible Business Forum 2014 in Dublin Castle on 11 November.

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The third iteration of Marks & Spencer’s ‘Plan A’ has extended the retailer’s commitments across its international business over the next six years

ne of the key achievements of Marks & Spencer’s ‘Plan A’ sustainability programme has been in its engagement with food suppliers, according to Carmel McQuaid, head of sustainable business at Marks & Spencer. Nearly a quarter (23pc) of the volume of food the retailer sources now comes from factories meeting Plan A’s ‘Silver’ sustainability standard. Under the programme, suppliers can strive to achieve Bronze, Silver or Gold measured on criteria such as quality, price and delivery on time and products must incorporate at least one Plan A element. “The scorecard we developed together with the factories focuses on what responses are needed for them to be lean and competitive,” explains McQuaid. “This meant that a lot of suppliers have seen the business case for operating in a sustainable way and they have become more efficient and better places to work.” “Silver status means something from a commercial point of view – that, all other things being equal, it makes it more likely that the supplier will win business. It has become an industry standard.” Plan A was first introduced in 2007 and its third iteration was launched in June of this year, extending its commitments across its international business over the next six years. Marks & Spencer has 798 UK stores, 455 international stores, 54 international territories and 85,000 employees worldwide. “The first Plan A was about making stakeholders aware of sustainable practices and doing the right thing, while the second drive was focused on technical improvement and ensuring that every product we sourced had a sustainable attribute. This version aims to make the existing business model better, helping us to prepare to tailor our offering around the world to be more local. It strives to empower managers to understand issues in the community and tailor-make their approach,” says McQuaid. It also further aligns the sustainability plan to M&S’s business plan to be a leading international, multi-channel retailer and includes innovative commitments that are firsts in retail and sustainable business. Highlights of the plan include the launch of a global community programme to increase the scale of the social, environmental and economic benefits of supply chain Plan A projects; ‘Make Your Mark’ being extended to help 5,000 young unemployed people by 2016 and the ‘Marks & Start’ employability


programme being launched in international markets. Sustainable learning stores are to be launched overseas and UK stores are to be

In 2013, 20pc of cotton used in M&S products came from sustainable sources, including Fairtrade adapted for future climate change challenges. The retailer’s energy efficiency target has been increased from 35pc to 50pc per sq ft by 2020 and UK stores will aim to raise £1m every year for local charities and plan to raise £20m for health and well being charities by 2020. Marc Bolland, chief executive of M&S, said at the launch in June: “Plan A is at the heart of our plans to become a sustainable, international, multi-channel retailer. It’s become a vital part of how we run our business and represents a better way of working that materially improves our customers’ and partners’ experience of M&S. Once again we have made 100 commitments comprising of existing, revised and new targets with our sights set on significant progress in the next few years.” Carmel McQuaid will speak at BITC Ireland’s Responsible Business Forum 2014 in Dublin Castle on 11 November.

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Responsible Business Forum 2014

Build Trust, Reputation and Culture #rbforum14

Tuesday, November 11th, Dublin Castle

Book your ticket today at The Responsible Business Forum is Ireland’s major conference on responsible and sustainable business practices and promises to be the most comprehensive, engaging and inspirational business event in Ireland.

Speakers include:

• Hear from 20 CEOs and thought leaders on key business challenges and the importance of embedding trust, reputation and culture. • Choose one of three interactive workshops which delve into building sustainable relationships with consumers, employees and suppliers. • Meet and network with senior delegates from Ireland’s leading businesses.

Visit to view the full programme and to book your ticket.

The conference is brought to you by Business in the Community Ireland and is sponsored by:

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Penny Hughes CBE, Non-Executive Director, RBS

Brendan Jennings Managing Partner, Deloitte

Dr. Andreas Kicherer Director Sustainability Strategy, BASF SE

Michael Crothers Managing Director, Shell E&P Ireland Limited

Margot Slattery Managing Director, Sodexo Ireland

Carmel McQuaid Head of Sustainable Business, Marks and Spencer

Tom Browne Group CEO, Friends First

Olivia O’Leary Journalist, writer and current affairs presenter

Digital Partner:

Media Partners:

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Forum for the


Responsible and sustainable business practices will come under the microscope at BITCI’s Responsible Business Forum 2014


major conference on trust, reputation and culture takes place in Dublin Castle on 11 November. Organised by Business in the Community Ireland (BITCI), the one-day event aims to explore and inspire responsible and sustainable business

practices. Entitled ‘Building Trust, Reputation and Culture’, it will feature more than 20 national and international expert speakers, including Tom Browne, group chief executive officer, Friends First; Lloyd Burdett, head of global clients and strategy, The Futures Company; Penny Hughes CBE, non-executive director, RBS; Brendan Jennings, managing partner, Deloitte Ireland; Geoff McDonald, global vicepresident human resources , Unilever; and Carmel McQuaid, head of sustainable business, Marks & Spencer. This year’s conference, which follows similar events in 2006 and 2010, will once again bring together the CEOs and senior management of some of Ireland’s top companies to discuss key trends in ethics, reputation and sustainability. It will present leading and inspirational thinking from the world’s largest, most innovative companies and practical workshops on how trust, reputation and culture can be built with key stakeholders. Delegates will also have access to cutting-edge content on corporate responsibility and sustainable practices and the opportunity to hear from and be inspired by thought and corporate leaders, whose focus will be on lessons learned as well as successes. The forum aims to explore business challenges of the future, hear from companies that have faced significant reputational challenges and what they have learned and explore the new business model where sustainability is embedded at the core. Specific sessions will include panel discussions on the business challenges faced by organisations in the age of transparency; on winning back trust with representatives from Shell, RBS and BASF; and on embedding sustainability at the core in the new business model. There will also be three parallel workshops on building trust, reputation and culture with employees, with customers and with suppliers. A closing address will be given by Minister for Jobs,

Tina Roche, CEO, BITCI with Brendan Jennings, managing partner, Deloitte Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton. “Drawing on over a decade’s experience, BITCI have witnessed first-hand a real sea change in the attitudes of Irish companies towards trust and reputation, with many companies using responsible business practices as the cornerstone of their strategic and sustainable planning for the future,” says Tina Roche, CEO, BITCI. “These forward thinking companies believe that customers, employees, investors and regulators place a high premium on trust and ethics and good governance are key in earning it. “The conference will be a unique opportunity to explore how companies can transform to sustainable businesses by placing corporate responsibility firmly on their business agenda. It will also reinforce the importance of sustainable business practices in the current business climate.” Sponsors of the conference include AOL, ESB, Shell, State Street, Ulster Bank and Accenture. The media partners are The Irish Times, RTÉ and Irish Director.

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Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Galway The Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Galway offers the most impressive meetings and events facilities in Galway City Centre and as the largest premier conference venue in the West of Ireland, it offers cutting edge facilities catering for up to 1000 delegates. The experienced Meeting and Events Team have the expertise to ensure your conference is a success, making it the perfect choice for event organisers and businesses in the area. With a varied range of meeting, exhibition and syndicate rooms to choose from, the Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Galway is the perfect venue for every event. The Inis Mór Ballroom offers excellent flexibility. It can be enjoyed in its entirety for large events accommodating up to 1000 guests. Alternatively, the sound proofed partitions allow for three separate events with a large reception area perfect as an extension to the main conference facility. There are also 6 modern Syndicate Rooms and a business centre. All meeting space is air conditioned and free high speed broadband access is available to all meeting delegates and hotel residents. Experience Meetings, an innovative concept was launched by Radisson Blu in response to changing customer demands and focuses on delivering seven key components for successful meetings:

• • • • • • •

Deliciously Nutritious Food, dishes designed to help delegates stay energised and focused. Includes plenty of fish, whole grains, fruit and vegetables Brain Box, a creative space, an alternative to a traditional meeting room Free & Fast WiFi for all Radisson Blu guests and meeting delegates Think Planet, a commitment to Responsible Business through Carbon Neutral meetings Booker rewards a Club Carlson loyalty programme for meeting planners, providing rewards for booking Yes I can! a group wide philosophy and positive service attitude - always ready to greet, treat and exceed expectations 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, a commitment to deliver 100% guest satisfaction or your money back

Rooms and Suites The hotel has 261 guest rooms including standard rooms, family rooms, junior suites, level 5 executive suites and 2 penthouses. All rooms are non-smoking and combine contemporary style and comfort along with complimentary WiFi for all guests. Our Level 5 suites are spacious and luxurious and the Penthouse Suites offer every luxury with a private kitchen, dining room, lounge, office, bedroom and spacious bathroom - ideal for business travellers looking for a home away from home.

For more information, contact our dedicated Meeting & Events Team on

091 538 300 Email: or visit

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team spirit The provision of skilled pro-bono support is a key element of engineering, architecture and project management firm PM Group’s CSR programme


arlier this year, PM Group made a commitment to expand its CSR programme internationally and is already well on the way to meeting its target of 2,000 hours volunteered this year. “I am immensely proud of the additional work and time our senior management and employees are putting into helping local communities. They have very quickly embraced the CSR programme and are already exceeding the challenge we gave them at the start of the year,” said Dave Murphy, CEO, PM Group. As an organisation projects are in PM Group’s DNA. It operates in a project environment with the knowledge that projects will fail if the leadership and the team are wrong. So when it came to extending the CSR programme senior management were engaged first and organised into teams across its office network. Mags Dalton, CSR co-ordinator at PM Group, explains that senior managers at its offices around the world were then tasked with identifying charities and local community organisations that would benefit from the firm’s assistance. “PM Group’s senior managers were very pleased with the response of their employees. It seems we have been involved in many charitable projects simply because of a personal connection someone had with a local charity,” she says. “It was therefore really important from the outset to ensure the choice of who to support was made by the employees themselves. Each choice is benchmarked against a set of guidelines and must have the proper governance.”

A number of projects have started recently driven by PM Group’s offices in Bangalore in India, Shanghai in China, Warsaw in Poland and in Singapore. As the company is finding out, it isn’t always possible to help every request but its employees’ personal involvement can be very persuasive. “The typhoon is sweeping Shanghai and it’s raining a lot recently. We worry more about the children and their kitchen than ever before,” said Rui Gao, senior HR and administration officer, when proposing support for the Guangci Orphanage in Shanghai. Gao is one of 30 volunteers from PM Group’s Shanghai office providing services for the creation of a clothes drying room, new kitchen, storage and utility room for the orphanage. PM Group is working with local partners EDRI Shanghai and Wuxi on the

L–R:Joanna Sierocinska, architect’s assistant); Mariusz Toporowski, leading architect; Marta Roszak, structural engineer; and Rafał Płominski, mechanical engineer

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Pictured at the Rice Bucket Challenge with Suresh Babu, Karunashraya Bangalore Hospice Trust (CEO) (second left) were from PM Group: KK Gopala (MD India), Anandhi Sathyamurthy (finance manager), Dave Murphy (CEO) and Allan Schouten, (MD Asia)

‘The typhoon is sweeping Shanghai and it’s raining a lot recently. We worry more about the children and their kitchen than ever before’

provision of funding and help with repairing the roof and decoration inside. “We can make a difference to the children’s everyday lives. We’re excited too about continuing to help them with other projects and are looking at educational projects in the future,” says Gao. Meanwhile in Bangalore, PM Group was contacted by a local clinic that takes care of terminally ill patients – over 50 people at any one time. So far it has provided funding for the clinic’s ‘Rice Bucket Challenge’ – similar to the Ice Bucket Challenge, but involving bags of rice being donated to families as well as bedding and equipment. “We have realised that our involvement has helped to raise awareness of this charity and they are receiving more support from other companies as a result. So we’re delighted about that,” says Anandhi Sathyamurthy, finance manager with PM Group in Bangalore. In Singapore, PM Group employees volunteered their time in October to help out at the Willing Hearts Soup Kitchen, while in Lodz in Poland PM Group staff are providing skilled pro-bono support for

the redevelopment of the main entrance to Miedzylesie Children’s Clinic, a home for disabled and abandoned children. “The Miedzylesie Clinic is the only centre of its kind in Poland. It brings me joy working with this charity in particular as we can really make a difference,” says Monika Dziecioł, senior administrative assistant in PM Group’s Warsaw office. PM Group has also helped a number of community organisations in Ireland and continues to place an emphasis on education projects, which saw over 40 volunteers from the firm working with education programmes such as Junior Achievement in the past year. Learnings from the Ireland experience over the past two years are being shared with the international offices to ensure PM Group’s support provides maximum benefit and efforts are coordinated. Employing a total of over 2,000 people, PM Group has recorded over 1,400 hours volunteered this year and this figure is going to increase as more employees get involved and the programme develops further across the international office network.

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in association with

Changing places executive at Business to Arts. He had been project director at the organisation since 2007. Hetherington graduated with a master’s in cultural policy and arts management from University College Dublin in 2007, having spent seven years in corporate treasury with a division of Rabobank International. He is the chair of the Butler Gallery in Kilkenny, an international fellow of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management at The Kennedy Center, and is a member of the Irish Government’s Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising.

Richard Pym Richard Pym, chairman designate, AIB Former group chief executive of Alliance & Leicester plc Richard Pym has joined the AIB board as a non-executive director. He will take over as chairman of the board when current chairman David Hodgkinson retires from the board in December 2014. A chartered accountant with extensive experience in financial services, Pym recently stepped down as chairman of The Co-operative Bank plc in the UK. He is also chairman of Nordax Finans AB and US Asset Resolution Limited. Previously, he chaired the BrightHouse Group plc and Halfords Group plc and was a non-executive director of The British Land Company plc, Old Mutual plc and Selfridges plc. Derek Moran, secretary general, Department of Finance Derek Moran has taken over as secretary general in the

Department of Finance. Moran was most recently assistant secretary general with responsibility for the fiscal policy division in the Department. He is chairman of the Tax Strategy Group and a council member of the Foundation for Fiscal Studies. He has served on the National Economic and Social Council, National Statistics Board and the EU’s Economic Policy and Tax Policy committees.

Larry Murrin, president, Ibec Larry Murrin has been announced as the new Ibec president. Murrin, who is CEO of Dawn Farm Foods, takes over from John Kennedy, president, Diageo Western Europe. Devin Toner, non-executive director, Enactus Ireland

Leinster Rugby and Ireland player Devin Toner has been appointed a non-executive director of not-for-profit Enactus Ireland. Toner, who was part of this year’s Six Nations winning team, will work with the chairperson of Enactus Terence O’Rourke and other board members, including former Leinster and Ireland team mate Leo Cullen, to develop the initiative in Ireland. Liam Daniel, non-executive director, Horizon Pharma Institute of Directors in Ireland (IoD) president Liam Daniel has been appointed to the board of Horizon Pharma plc. Daniel, a chartered director and chartered accountant, has been president of the IoD since May 2013, having been elected to its board in June 2010. He was executive vice-president and company secretary of Elan Corporation plc from December 2001 until the company’s merger with Perrigo in December 2013. He joined the organisation as

Andrew Hetherington, chief executive, Business to Arts

Andrew Hetherington Andrew Hetherington has been promoted to the position of chief

Liam Daniel

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financial controller in 1994. Daniel was previously financial director of Xtra-vision plc from 1990 to 1992 and prior to that head of finance of An Post for three years. He is also a former president of the Financial Executives’ Association of Ireland. Ultan Courtney, chairman designate, Dublin Bus Ultan Courtney has been appointed chairman designate of Dublin Bus for a threeyear period. Courtney is currently managing director at Courtney HR. Having previously held senior HR positions in Superquinn, Waterford Foods, Ibec and C&C Group, he has been a consultant since 2008. The appointment was made by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe. Ryan Preston, chief financial officer, Independent News & Media Independent News & Media has appointed Ryan Preston as chief financial officer to replace Eamonn O’Kennedy, who has been in the role for the last two years. Preston will join from Tesco, where he is currently group finance director Europe. A

native of Belfast, Preston has a BA (hons) in accounting from the University of Ulster in Jordanstown. He worked in Stewarts Supermarkets before joining Tesco in 1997 as part of the acquisition, working in internal audit. He then held senior financial positions in operations, clothing and homeware, and distribution and supply chain management. He became CFO of Tesco Ireland in 2010 and in 2013 was promoted to group finance director for Tesco Europe.

OC&C Strategy Consultants and a manager at Andersen.

Andy McCue, chief executive designate, Paddy Power

Annemarie Harte, CEO, Hardware Association Ireland

Andy McCue has been promoted to chief executive designate at Paddy Power plc and will take over from Patrick Kennedy on 1 January 2015. McCue is currently managing director, retail UK & Ireland of the bookmaker. A member of the Paddy Power management committee since 2009, he has been with the firm for eight years and has responsibility for regulatory and public affairs and leading the group’s online and retail multi-channel strategy in addition to his current managing director role. Before joining the company, he was a principal with

Ryan Preston

Colm Barrington, chairman, Aer Lingus Colm Barrington has been reappointed chair of Aer Lingus for a further year. His term will now expire in September 2015. Barrington, who is chief executive of Fly Leasing, has been on the board of Aer Lingus since September 2008 and was first appointed chairman in October of that year.

Associated Newspapers in the UK and Ireland, and she worked with Paddy Power to launch its online casino in the UK. Colm O’Neill, chairman, Telecommunications and Internet Federation BT Ireland chief executive Colm O’Neill has been appointed as chairman for Ibec body Telecommunications and Internet Federation (TIF). O’Neill joined BT Ireland in 2009 as managing director for business. He was appointed chief executive in September 2011. He previously held roles in EMC and PwC. He is a member of the board of the Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition and the board of Business in the Community in Northern Ireland. Emer Daly, non-executive Holdings

Annemarie Harte Annemarie Harte has been appointed chief executive officer of the Hardware Association Ireland. Harte’s experience with representative groups includes being secretary and chief executive officer of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland from 2007–2013 and manager/chief executive of Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Chamber of Commerce 20052007. Most recently she has been consultant to the Royal Life Saving Society UK, advising on organisational and cultural change management and developing its revenue growth business plan. She has also held senior positions in sales, marketing and business development across the Telegraph Group Limited and




FBD Holdings has appointed Emer Daly as an independent non-executive director. The appointment takes effect from 14 November 2014. Daly is a fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland and has experience of the general insurance industry, having previously served as a director with Axa in Ireland between 2000 and 2006 with responsibility for financial operations, strategy and risk management. She is currently a non-executive director of Permanent TSB Group Holdings plc and Permanent TSB plc, where she also serves as chairman of the audit committee. She is also a non-executive director of Friends Provident International Limited and Lombard SA and chairman of the audit, risk and compliance committee for both companies. Prior to joining Axa Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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Ireland, she worked in practice with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dublin and New York. Daly has a BA (hons) in economics and a diploma in corporate governance from University College Dublin and is a certified bank director. Paul Connolly, non-executive chairman, Brehon Capital Partners

Paul Connolly Real estate private equity firm Brehon Capital Partners has appointed Paul Connolly as non-executive chairman of its board. Connolly is the founder of investment banking firm Connolly Capital and is a director at Independent News & Media, APN News & Media, and Communicorp. He is also chairman of Unicef Ireland and acts as a senior advisor to Credit Suisse. John Hurley, chief technology officer, Ryanair John Hurley has joined Ryanair as chief technology officer. Hurley previously worked at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, where he was vice-president of engineering and product operations, having joined in 2007 and served as director of product operations, director of platform development and software development programme manager. He was previously production manager at both Intuition Publishing Ltd and Education Multimedia Group and has 16 years’ experience in the IT industry.

in association with

Enda Corneille, country manager for Ireland, Emirates Airline Former Aer Lingus executive Enda Corneille has joined Emirates Airline as country manager for Ireland. In the role, Corneille is managing a team of 26 people located between the public reservations office in Hume Street, Dublin 2 and Dublin Airport. Corneille held a number of senior positions with Aer Lingus, which he joined in 1986, including country manager roles in Switzerland, Netherlands, London and Ireland. In 2006, he was appointed to the executive team as commercial director where he had responsibility for all aspects of the airline’s commercial operations. In 2010, he was appointed director of shared services and corporate affairs. From December 2012, he was a global instructor at the IATA Training and Development Institute in Geneva, where he delivered airline management training to a range of carriers. He is visiting lecturer to Cranfield University in the UK and holds a first class honours MBA in aviation management. Tony McDonnell, managing director, HSBC Securities Services Ireland

in Ireland and growing its book of business. He was previously regional head of asset managers – Europe and North America, sales and business development, HSBC Securities Services where he developed and implemented sector strategy and plans for HSS across all products and solutions. McDonnell joined HSBC Ireland in 2002, becoming head of business development for HSSI in 2007, before taking on a European role as regional head of alternatives Europe, sales and business development, HSBC Securities Services in 2010. Matt Williams, group director (Ireland), UTV


commercial operations for Viacom across its suite of channels, including MTV, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central. Deirdre Hayes, managing director, Property


Aramark Ireland has appointed Deirdre Hayes as managing director of Aramark Property. Prior to joining Aramark in 2012, Hayes was a founding partner of property advisor firm HT Meagher O’Reilly. She is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and member of the Society of Chartered Surveyors in Ireland.


Matt Williams has been appointed as UTV’s group director of trading (Ireland), based in Dublin. Williams will be responsible for the development, implementation and optimisation of trading strategies across television, as well as the further development of UTV Group multi-platform trading in Ireland. He has a more than 20 years of commercial trading experience – most recently as head of trading with TV3, where he was responsible for strategy and commercial revenue negotiations. He started his career with STV in London, spent 16 years with ITV and moved to Dublin in 2003 to set up

John Flynn, chairman, Irish Venture Capital Association John Flynn, managing director of ACT Venture Capital, has been elected chairman of the Irish Venture Capital Association (IVCA). He is currently a board member of four VC-backed firms and manages the AIB Start-up Accelerator Fund. He has over 20 years’ experience in software and technology venture investment. He was previously involved in a number of successful venture-backed companies that were acquired by international firms for over €500m. Prior to joining ACT in 1996, Flynn worked in the UK in various software engineering

Tony McDonnell HSBC has appointed Tony McDonnell as managing director, HSBC Securities Services (Ireland) (HSSI). McDonnell will be responsible for running the HSS operation

Matt Williams

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senior appointments

in association with

and business development roles with IT services company EDS. He has an MBA from Trinity College Dublin and a degree in physics and mathematics from University College Dublin. Heather McGuire, chief executive officer, Cork Foundation

time at Titan, she sat on the executive committee. Most recently she served as executive vice-president for philanthropic organisation Smart Tap LLC. Noel O’Grady, sales director, Ward Solutions Ward Solutions has appointed Noel O’Grady as sales director. Before joining Ward Solutions, O’Grady was UK and Ireland sales director of Egenera, the global cloud management software provider, for one and a half years. Prior to this, he was a founder and sales director of Fort Technologies for five years. He completed the trade sale of Fort to Egenera in 2012. O’Grady also held previous sales management roles at Rits Information Security and Baker Security respectively. Tim France,

Heather McGuire CEO, iProspect Cork Foundation has appointed Heather McGuire as chief executive officer. McGuire has a sales and management background spanning both Europe and the US. She spent 16 years working in media in New York City, San Francisco and Chicago, fulfilling senior sales management roles at Discovery Channel and Screenvision. She was deputy managing director at Titan Ireland from 2006 to 2009 before being transferred back to the US. During her

Tim France has been named CEO of iProspect, part of the Dentsu Aegis Network. France replaces Shenda Loughnane, who has been appointed global strategy director at iProspect Global. He was most recently a board director at Acorn. Before that, he was managing director of Io, responsible for the agency’s Dublin and London officers. Simon Elliot, managing director, Hume Brophy international corporate

communications practice Hume Brophy has appointed Simon Elliott as managing director of its new international corporate communications practice. Elliott will be based in London and will be responsible for growing a corporate communications offer across all Hume Brophy’s European and South East Asian network. Elliot was previously managing director of FTI Strategic Communications.


on due diligence, financial integration and consolidation of acquired companies. He is a steering committee member of Aramark’s global business services team, which has responsibility for developing its financial and operating platform in Europe. Enda McDermott, director of research, MERC Partners

Michael Cawley, non-executive director, Ryanair Former Ryanair deputy CEO and chief operating officer Michael Cawley has been appointed to the airline’s board. Cawley worked for Ryanair for 17 years until he retired in March 2014. He is also a non-executive director of Paddy Power and Kingspan Group and chairman of Failte Ireland.

Thomas Mulryan, chief financial officer, Aramark Ireland Aramark Ireland has promoted Thomas Mulryan to the position of chief financial officer. Having joined Aramark in 2002 as a financial accountant, Mulryan was appointed financial controller in 2005. He played a key role in Aramark’s acquisition strategy with particular focus

Enda McDermott MERC Partners has appointed Enda McDermott as director of research. McDermott brings extensive executive search and industry experience to the role, having covered the Irish and global markets for senior level appointments. He joined Merc Partners in 2006 and has conducted many senior level search assignments in most sectors. He previously worked for UK Trade & Investment (UKTI), based at the British Embassy in Dublin, as a senior trade advisor, providing targeted market research to UK companies entering the

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senior appointments

in association with

Irish market. He holds a BA in economics and geography from Trinity College Dublin. Bill O’Connell, vice-president of global logistics, EMC EMC has promoted Bill O’Connell to the role of vicepresident of global logistics. Before this, he held a variety of roles across manufacturing and the supply chain at the company. In his new role, he is responsible for a global team, managing the shipping, delivery and post sales customer service support of EMC products in over 140 countries across EMEA, Asia and the Americas. He will manage a large and diverse team across various regions, including Cork, Europe, Cairo, China, as well as multiple locations in North America and Canada. O’Connell joined the company in 1989, having graduated with a bachelor of arts in computer science and mathematics from UCC, a higher diploma in education and an MSc in supply chain management. Gabriel Fagan, chief economist, Central Bank of Ireland The Central Bank of Ireland has appointed Gabriel Fagan as chief economist. Fagan has joined from the European Central Bank, where he held a number of key roles, most recently as senior advisor in the directorate-general research from 2011. He also previously headed up the monetary policy research and econometric modelling divisions. He previously worked in the Central Bank as an economist up to 1992. He holds degrees in economics from University College Dublin and Trinity College Dublin. Robert Pitt, group CEO, Independent News & Media

Robert Pitt

Independent News & Media has appointed Robert Pitt as its new group chief executive officer. Pitt, who was most recently chief operations officer of Tesco Czech Republic for two years, replaces Vincent Crowley, who stepped down in May. Pitt was previously managing director, Tesco franchise stores in the Czech Republic; and operations director, hypermarkets Tesco, Czech Republic and Slovakia. He held senior management positions for Lidl in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Ireland from 1999 to 2007. From 1997 to 1999 he was general manager at Shibo in Beijing, before which he worked with PwC in the Czech Republic. He has a BA in economics from UCD. Bernard Bot, chief financial Lingus



Aer Lingus Group has appointed Bernard Bot as chief financial officer. Bot was most recently group chief financial officer and executive board member at Netherlands-based global express delivery company TNT Express. Before joining TNT, he spent 13 years at McKinsey & Company. He has an MSc in business economics from Erasmus University in the Netherlands and an MBA from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business in the US. Oliver Daniels, CEO, Insight Centre for Data Analytics

Oliver Daniels has been appointed CEO of the Insight Centre for Data Analytics, the SFI-funded joint initiative between researchers at DCU, NUI Galway, UCC and UCD, and other partner institutions. Daniels joins from Avaya, where was R&D leader of research and development for contact centre applications for five years. Before that, he was R&D leader for Nortel. He has also served as CEO of Accendo Technologies, an Irish start-up. He has also worked in senior roles in technology and management in ADC, and Saville Systems, based in Ireland, the UK and France. He is credited as a co-inventor in several contact centre patent applications. He has a BComm from NUI Galway. Prof John Flood, McCann FitzGerald chair of international law and business, UCD Sutherland School of Law Prof John Flood has been appointed to the newly created McCann FitzGerald Chair of International Law and Business at University College Dublin’s Sutherland School of Law. Prof Flood studied law and sociolegal studies at the LSE, Warwick, and Yale Law School before completing his PhD in sociology at Northwestern University in Chicago. He worked at the American Bar Foundation as a research associate and Indiana University-Bloomington and the University of Westminster before joining UCD Sutherland School of Law. He has been an Exxon fellow in ethics in the Poynter Center at Indiana University, an academic visitor in the Sociology Department at LSE, a Jean Monnet fellow at the European University Institute in Florence, a visiting fellow at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, and transtate adjunct professor at the University of Bremen. He was a visiting professor in the School of Law at the University

of Miami, and is now honorary professor of law at UCL where he co-ordinated the Law Without Walls programme. He is also visiting professor of law and sociology at the University of Westminster. Ciaran Rohan, general secretary, Association of Higher and Civil Public Servants Ciaran Rohan has been appointed general secretary of the Association of Higher and Civil Public Servants (AHCPS). Rohan has been a member of the AHCPS executive committee since 2002 (including three years as chairperson and vicechairperson) and held the role of assistant general secretary from 2008. Before this he held various positions in the PSEU, including branch chairperson, chairperson of the education staff panel and a member of the PSEU national executive. During his time at the AHCPS, he has been centrally involved at a national level on discussions relating to Croke Park 1 and the Haddington Road Agreement. Aidan Trindle, vice-president of global manufacturing operations, EMC EMC has promoted Aidan Trindle to vice-president of global manufacturing operations. Trindle, who was most recently senior director of manufacturing operations, is now responsible for the manufacturing of the entire suite of EMC products, exporting to 123 countries across the globe from Ireland. He will lead a team of almost 900 people in Cork, serving EMC’s international customer base outside North America. A computer studies graduate from University College Cork, he joined EMC 20 years ago and holds a master’s in supply chain management, as well as qualifications from University of Limerick and the Association of Chartered Certified

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patron news

Executive search and

the value of insight-driven market intelligence

Retained executive search consulting, a globally established sphere of management consulting, is an important professional service provided to the top management of organisations. The impact of a key executive hire on an organisation can be immense. Conversely, the cost of an unsuccessful senior appointment can be devastating. Stock values Enda McDermott, director of frequently rise and fall as research, MERC Partners a consequence of executive changes at the top level. The process of retained executive search involves methodical analysis, planning and research in order to generate a final slate of candidates that represents the very best executive talent worldwide for a particular position. Hiring organisations usually retain an executive search firm for its most critical senior executive positions. The client contact will typically be a senior officer of the company or, for the most senior positions such as chief executive officer, the board of directors or the remuneration and appointments sub-committee. Given the sensitivity involved for all parties concerned, retained executive search consultants must operate with the highest levels of integrity, discretion and confidentiality. A search firm lives and dies on its reputation and within the global executive search industry, perhaps above all others, a firm’s brand is very much defined by its reputation in the marketplace. A highly trusted reputation can only be nurtured over many years and is largely dependent on the track record of the people within that firm and the many thousands of professional and respectful moments of market interaction they have undertaken as search professionals. An executive search firm runs on market insight and intelligence. That includes intelligence about specific industries, specific organisations and their strategies and cultures; as well as intelligence about individual executives and their strengths, limitations, backgrounds and compensation. Search firms are expert at capturing and curating a wealth of information from a myriad of sources – among the most important of these are trusted contacts in the industries and disciplines in which the search firm operates. “A great search firm is one that can readily utilise this wealth of silent data,” says Enda McDermott, who was recently appointed director of research at MERC Partners, having been on the firm’s in-house executive search research team since 2006. “This is a highly valued USP – and one that can only be built on reputation, trust and track record.”


Vodafone 4G network

expands under national rollout programme

Over 75pc of Irish people can now access 4G coverage as Vodafone’s superfast 4G network expands under the company’s national rollout programme. The programme has reached six cities and over 352 towns and villages across the country, which is the widest national coverage available. Customers can now experience enhanced speeds of up to 10 times faster than standard 3G – next to no buffering for video streaming, almost instant photo uploads, Madalina Suceveanu, superfast file downloading technology director, and seamless music Vodafone Ireland streaming. Vodafone is on schedule to complete its national rollout programme, which is focused on expanding data coverage across both urban and rural areas. As 4G is being rolled out across the country, Vodafone is upgrading its existing network, giving high speed data (3G) everywhere customers have voice services, better indoor coverage, improved voice call quality and wider high definition voice coverage, a service which is only currently available on the Vodafone network. Upgrades have already completed in the south-east and southwest of the country with upgrades already commencing in the east of the country earlier this summer. Commenting on the latest phase of its national network rollout programme, technology director at Vodafone Ireland Madalina Suceveanu said: “People rely on mobile devices more than ever before and can now benefit from having access to the best and most relevant content, for personal or business use, whenever and wherever they want. “We have invested Ð1bn to date in Ireland and plan to invest Ð550m over the next three years, which includes investment in our 3G and 4G network, converged IT platforms and fixed network and services. “The roll out of Vodafone’s superfast 4G, as well as the improvements to our existing 3G network, mean Vodafone customers can now do more of what they love with their phones at faster speeds and in more places.”

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HIGHLIGHTS AUTUMN 2014 Gleesonand Jessica Paré. John Boorman’s new feature Queen and Country, starring David Thewlis, Richard E Grant, Sinéad Cusack, Pat Shortt and Brían F O’Byrne, has its Irish premiere, after being chosen for the Director’s Fortnight section of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival. The festival will also show Björk: Biophilia Live, a concert film by Nick Fenton and Peter Strickland.

Emerson String Quartet

MUSIC Emerson String Quartet The New York-based Emerson String Quartet has notched up more than 30 recordings, nine Grammys – including two for Best Classical Album – three Gramophone Awards, the Avery Fisher Prize and Musical America’s Ensemble of the Year since setting up 1976. Following a summer season that included engagements in South America and a tour of Japan, the quartet will give a series of performances across Europe in November, including Dublin on 17 November as part of the National Concert Hall’s International Concert Series 2014/15. On the programme will be Haydn String Quartet No 2 in E-flat major, Op 33 “The Joke”; Ravel String Quartet in F major; and Beethoven String Quartet No 13 in B flat major, Op 130 with Grosse Fugue Op 133.

LITERATURE Dublin Book Festival This year’s Dublin Book Festival opens with an evening celebrating Lines of Vision, an illustrated anthology published to mark 150 years of the National Gallery of Ireland and featuring 56 acclaimed Irish writers. At the opening event, which takes place in the gallery, Seán Rocks of RTÉ Radio 1’s Arena will talk to four of the contributing authors – Alex Barclay, Kevin Barry, John

Boyne and Donal Ryan – about their stories and the works of art that inspired them. Many of the other events during the festival – readings, debates, public interviews, book launches and workshops – will take place in Smock Alley. The festival runs from 13 to 16 November.

DANCE Swan Lake Ballet Ireland is presenting a national tour of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake this autumn, travelling to 25 theatres around the country. The tour kicked off on 24 October at the Draíocht, Blanchardstown and will conclude with a matinee performance at the Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray on 21 December. Venues along the way will include the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin – with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra – the Town Hall Theatre in Galway, Roscommon Arts Centre, Wexford Opera House, The Helix in Dublin, Lime Tree Theatre in Limerick and Siamsa Tíre, Tralee. swan-lake

FILM Cork Film Festival The 59th edition of the Cork Film Festival runs from 7 to 16 November. Highlights will include the world premiere of comedy romance Standby, directed by Rob and Ronan Burke and starring Brian

Exhibition On Screen Produced by award-winning director Phil Grabsky, the upcoming season of Exhibition On Screen follows the success of previous titles Leonardo Live from the National Gallery London, Manet from the Royal Academy of Art London, Vermeer from the National Gallery London and Munch from the Munch Museum and National Gallery Oslo. These special cinema events screened to over 1,000 cinemas across more than 30 countries, including Ireland. The second season will feature five titles – Matisse from Tate Modern; Rembrandt from the National Gallery, London and the Rijksmuseum; Girl with a Pearl Earring – and other treasures from the Mauritshuis in The Hague; Vincent Van Gogh – A new way of seeing, with exclusive access to the Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam; and The Impressionists from Paris, London and the USA. They will be released from this month through to May 2015. In addition to covering the exhibitions’ paintings, the films take audiences behind the scenes to discover what lies behind the exhibition creatively and technically and what the artwork reveals about the artist and the particular historical period. The series is filmed exclusively for cinema at the exhibitions and on location.

THEATRE The Waste Ground Party Directed by Gerry Stembridge, The Waste Ground Party, which runs to 22 November, marks the Abbey Theatre debut for awardwinning playwright Shaun Dunne (I’ve to Mind Her, Death of the Tradesmen). Dunne is a graduate of the Abbey Theatre New Playwrights Programme. The play will be

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Duncan Campbell Imma is presenting the first major exhibition in Dublin by Turner Prize nominee Duncan Campbell. The Dublin-born artist’s production spans several media and focuses on the “power of stories and the boundaries between the actual and the imagined, historical and media representation, record and interpretation”. His solo presentation at Imma will include recent works and a newly commissioned film work. It opens on 8 November and runs until 8 February 2015.

Mike Kelley, Primal Architecture (1995), Acrylic, wood, steel, pencil and paper, 270 x 220 cm. Collection Museum Ludwig Cologne / on loan Gesellschaft für Moderne Kunst am Museum Ludwig e.V., 2006. Courtesy Museum Ludwig. © The Mike Kelley Foundation / Kelley Studio performed on the Peacock stage.

VISUAL ARTS Primal Architecture Borrowing its title from a work by American artist Mike Kelley, this Irish Museum of Modern Art (Imma) exhibition brings together works by Irish and international artists that elaborate on notions of pseudo-autobiography, consciousness, identity, architecture, power and nostalgia. It will feature artworks spanning across varied media and decades, including installation, video, sculpture, drawing, performance and photography. The artists featured include Kelley, Jeremy Deller, Conrad Shawcross, Kevin Atherton, Linder, Jesse Jones and Bedwyr Williams and for many the exhibition at Imma will be their first presentation in Ireland. The exhibition runs from 1 November to 1 March 2015. Parnell Square in Photographs This year is the 40th anniversary of a photographic exhibition entitled The Architecture of Parnell Square, which led

to the founding of the Irish Architectural Archive in 1976. Running in its premises at 45 Merrion Square, Dublin 2 until 14 November, this exhibition re-presents the black and white photographs of Parnell Square by David Davison that were displayed in the original show. Rembrandt: The Late Works Introducing this exhibition of famous masterpieces and rare drawings and prints from the 1650s until his death in 1669, the National Gallery, London notes that Rembrandt’s later years were turbulent and marked with controversy, and also produced some of his most soulful, deeply moving and strikingly modern works. The exhibition was organised by the National Gallery, London and the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam and, from now until 18 January 2015, offers visitors “an opportunity to experience the passion, emotion and innovation of the great master”. The exhibition, which includes 30 paintings, 20 drawings and 30 prints, will run in the Rijksmuseum from 12 February until 17 May 2015.

Duncan Campbell, Arbeit, 2011 (still). 16 mm film transferred to digital format; black-and-white, sound, 39 min, Courtesy of the artist

Duncan Campbell, Bernadette, 2008, film still, 16mm film transferred to digital video, 38’ 10’’, Courtesy of the artist and Rodeo Gallery, Istanbul

Duncan Campbell, Make It New John, 2009, film still, 16mm film and analogue video transferred to digital video, 50’, Courtesy of the artist and Rodeo Gallery, Istanbul Autumn 2014 Irish Director

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IoD Autumn Lunch CEO of the Musgrave Group Chris Martin was the guest speaker at this year’s IoD Autumn Lunch, which took place on Thursday, 25 September in the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel – Burlington Road. The event attracted an attendance of approximately 400 IoD members and their guests and was sponsored by London City Airport. Martin spoke about Ireland’s reputation as a worldclass centre for food innovation, Harvest 2020 and trends and opportunities in Ireland’s food sector.

Brian McGurk and Bryn Owen

Chris Martin

Charley Stoney, Michael Carey and Carol Bolger

Ray O’Connell, Kevin Neary and Gregory Johnston

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Jimmy Murphy, Deirdre Clerkin and Gareth Walsh

Karen Carmichael and Robert Park, MXB

Caitlin O’Connor, Mark O’Donnell and Susan O’Connor

Ken McCutheon, Oonagh Fadder and Tom Byrne

Stephen Cloonan, Gabbit; Darina Kneafsey, Quilly; and Donal Flinn, Druids Glen

Dr Tom Courtney and Ralph MacDarby

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Bryn Owen, marketing director, London City Airport; Maura Quinn, CEO, IoD in Ireland; Chris Martin, CEO, Musgrave Group; and Liam Daniel, president, IoD in Ireland

Karen Carmichael and Robert Park, MXB

Conor Bofin, Bobby Kerr and Michael O’Driscoll

Stephen Fuller, Rebecca Mitchell and Alan Mahon

Mark Leech and Donnchadh O’Neill

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Page 77

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Letterfrom fromthe theeditor editor Letter Welcome to the autumn issue of Irish Director. Welcome to the autumn issue of Irish Director. In our director profile we talk to In our director profile we talk to philanthropist Loretta Brennan Glucksman, who philanthropist Loretta Brennan Glucksman, who has contributed so much to Ireland over the has contributed so much to Ireland over the last 25 years in a wide range of areas, including last 25 years in a wide range of areas, including peace, arts and education. In our One to Watch peace, arts and education. In our One to Watch section, we look at the story so far for Athlonesection, we look at the story so far for Athlonebased OxyMem, a UCD spin-out that is winning based OxyMem, a UCD spin-out that is winning accolades for its breakthrough wastewater accolades for its breakthrough wastewater treatment technology. treatment technology. We’re also launching our new ‘Future We’re also launching our new ‘Future Business’ series with a look at the concept of business agility in reacting to Business’ series with a look at the concept of business agility in reacting to changing customer needs. changing customer needs. The role of the chairperson comes under the microscope in our The role of the chairperson comes under the microscope in our Boardroom section. We also look at how organisations can make themselves Boardroom section. We also look at how organisations can make themselves whistleblowing ready. whistleblowing ready. And we continue our 12-month CSR campaign with a look at the complex And we continue our 12-month CSR campaign with a look at the complex area of the marketplace, which takes in everything from supply chains to area of the marketplace, which takes in everything from supply chains to customer relations and product quality. customer relations and product quality. Thanks as ever to the IoD members and others who have contributed their Thanks as ever to the IoD members and others who have contributed their time and shared their expertise and insights. We welcome feedback and time and shared their expertise and insights. We welcome feedback and suggestions to suggestions to

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Grainne Rothery Grainne Rothery Editor, Irish Director Editor, Irish Director

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Front cover photo: Aengus McMahon / McMahonPhotography Photography Front cover photo: Aengus McMahon / McMahon ISSN: 1649-3621 ISSN: 1649-3621

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Responding to disruption through business agility

Ireland’s potential to become a global ICT powerhouse





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