Business News

Business & Finance CEO 100 Index 2022 — Part 1

By Business & Finance
12 October 2022

Business & Finance has released the annual CEO 100 Index, recognising the leading chief executives operating in Ireland in 2022.

Part 1 Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Natasha Adams, Chief Executive Officer: Republic of Ireland,
Tesco Plc

Natasha was appointed as CEO Republic of Ireland in April 2022 having been the Chief People Officer since June 2018, in both roles as part of Tesco Group Executive Committee. As Chief People Officer, Natasha was a Trustee for the Tesco Pension Scheme, sat on the Tesco Cyber Security Committee and Tesco Privacy and Data Committee, advisor to both the Tesco Board and the Remuneration and Nominations & Governance Committees on remuneration, succession planning and recruitment while also being a Steering Group Member for both Movement to Work and the 30th Club. Natasha is a Companion of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, a trustee for IGD and a Non Executive Director for Berkeley Holding Group Limited. A Tesco colleague since 1998, Natasha has held a number of leadership roles in Retail Operations and People functions, always enjoying the pace colleagues, customers and suppliers bring to the retail environment.

Jim Bergin, Chief Executive Officer,

Since joining Glanbia in 1984, Jim has held numerous Senior Management positions across the business. In 2003, he joined the Ingredients business as Operations Manager before moving to the role of Chief Executive Officer of Glanbia Ingredients Ireland (GII) in 2005. With the formation of Glanbia Ireland in 2017, he took over as CEO. In 2021, Jim was appointed Chief Executive of Glanbia Co-op and oversaw the transaction that saw the Co-op assume full control of the Glanbia Ireland business. In 2022 he was appointed to the governing board of the new technological university (TU) for the South East. He is a former Chairman of the Irish Dairy Industry Association.

Conor Brennan, Chief Executive Officer,
Arachas Corporate Brokers

Conor Brennan is the Chief Executive Officer of Arachas Corporate Brokers, one of the leading brokers in Ireland. In addition, in 2021 the Ardonagh Group made the strategic decision to headquarter the newly formed Ardonagh Europe in Dublin and appoint Conor CEO of that entity to lead its strategy of replicating the Arachas acquisition strategy across Europe. Conor led the Arachas business since 2018 through a period of rapid expansion both prior to and following its acquisition by the Ardonagh Group of companies in 2020 to make Arachas one of Ireland’s largest nationwide insurance broker with over 450 employees and offices nationwide. Arachas is the SME broker of choice & with over 50 years’ experience, has built trusted relationships with clients and insurance partners. More recently, Conor has worked closely with the Ardonagh Group, the IDA, and local representatives to establish a Global Data Analytics Centre in Mullingar, Co. Westmeath to better serve its global customer base assets. The Centre is actively recruiting highly skilled individuals to fill over 60 roles including Data Scientists and Data Visualisation executives. Prior to becoming CEO of Arachas and Ardonagh Europe, Conor previously held a number of national and international executive positions with leading global insurer Zurich Insurance PLC.

JD Buckley, Chief Executive Officer,
Sky Ireland

JD Buckley is Chief Executive Officer of Sky Ireland and has led the Irish business since 2012. JD is responsible for Sky’s consumer and media divisions, driving the growth of the overall business and leading a team of 1,000 employees in Ireland. Under JD’s leadership, the Sky business has doubled over the last 8 years with the launch of Sky Broadband, Sky Q and its streaming service, NOW. JD has also spearheaded a major investment in sports with a groundbreaking deal with the GAA and launching the Sports Extra pack. Prior to joining Sky, JD held senior roles with international mobile operator, Digicel, and was a strategy consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Michael Burke, Chief Executive Officer,
Chanelle Pharma

Chanelle Pharma is Ireland’s largest manufacturer of generic pharmaceuticals for human and animal health. Headquartered in Loughrea, the company exports to 92 countries worldwide. It is one of only two companies in Europe with FDA approval for the manufacture of a veterinary product for the US market. Founded in 1985 by Michael H. Burke with just two employees, today Chanelle Pharma employs over 620 people in Ireland, the UK, Portugal and Jordan. The company’s pioneering approach to product innovation has been a key factor in the company’s substantial growth in recent years. With a strong R&D pipeline, Chanelle is well positioned to continue its expansion into new markets.

Paul Brown, Chief Executive Officer,
John Sisk & Son

Paul is Chief Executive Officer of John Sisk & Son having previously been Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the UK construction and civils teams. He is also a Contractor Director on the Build UK board. Developed over 25 years in the civils’ industry, Paul has strong leadership skills enabling him to lead effective teams, develop strong and lasting customer relationships.

Rory Byrne, Chief Executive Officer,
Dole Plc

Rory Byrne assumed the position of Chief Executive Officer of Dole plc on its formation on July 30th, 2021 having served as CEO of Total Produce plc since December 2006. Prior to this, Rory was the Managing Director of the Fyffes General Produce division from 2002 and was appointed to the position of Executive Director in 2006. Rory has extensive experience in the fresh produce industry, having joined Fyffes in 1988 and has held a number of senior positions within Fyffes including Finance Director of the Group’s UK business and Managing Director of its Spanish operations.

Michael Carvill, Managing Director,
Kenmare Resources

Michael has been the Managing Director of Kenmare since 1986. He worked as a contracts engineer in Algeria and as a project engineer at Tara Mines, Ireland. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers of Ireland (FIEI). He holds a BSc in Mechanical Engineering (Queen’s University, Belfast) and an MBA (Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania).

Bob Casey, Chief Executive Officer,
Korn Ferry

Bob works with his clients to design optimal organisation structures, roles, and responsibilities. He and his team help them hire the right people and advise them on how to reward and motivate their workforce while developing professionals as they navigate and advance their careers. He operates at senior management and board level both in Ireland and internationally. Working across a broad range of industries, with a specialism in consumer, Agri business ,& industrial focused clients. He is also a member of the EMEA CEO and Board Practice and the EMEA Sports Practice. Working with multinationals, both publicly quoted and privately owned, and private equity backed organisations, he is uniquely positioned with demonstrable experience in how to align a company’s talent strategy and overall capabilities with organisational strategy and culture from his time as a Chief executive. A former professional rugby player and leader, having represented Leinster, London Irish, Ireland and the Barbarians, Bob is adept at working within a high performance team environment.

Leo Clancy, Chief Executive Officer,
Enterprise Ireland

Leo Clancy is the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of Enterprise Ireland, the state agency that helps Irish companies to start, grow, innovate and win export sales in global markets. Before being appointed as CEO of Enterprise Ireland, Leo led the Technology, Consumer and Business Services sector as well as IT, Marketing Communications and Corporate Services at IDA Ireland and was a member of the Executive Management team. In that role, Leo worked extensively with global technology and services companies invested in Ireland. Prior to his public sector career, Leo spent 17 years in the telecommunications industry, including in a number of management, technical and engineering roles. He was part of the senior leadership team at e|net, a high-growth Irish wholesale broadband provider and spent his early career at Ericsson, primarily working on global services for deployment of mobile and fixed networks. Leo is a frequent contributor to press interviews, conference speaking and blogs. On behalf of Enterprise Ireland, he is a member of a number of cross-departmental and cross-agency groups.

Terry Clune, Founder & Chief Executive Officer,

Terry Clune is founder and CEO of CluneTech, a suite of software technology companies providing industry-leading solutions that simplify global business. As CEO, Terry oversees and steers the long-term growth of the group, which comprises TransferMate, Immedis, Taxback International,, Sprintax, Visa First, Benamic and Gradguide. One of Ireland’s most successful entrepreneurs, Terry is a past winner of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year award and the HSBC European Entrepreneur of the Year award. He founded his first company, Taxback, in 1996 while studying economics in Trinity College, Dublin. In 2010, Terry established TransferMate, the largest company in the group’s portfolio and the world’s leading provider of B2B payments infrastructure as a service. TransferMate enables companies to send and receive cross-border payments faster, easier and at lower cost via connected API technology. The company completed a funding round in May 2022 to become Ireland’s seventh tech unicorn, with a $1BN valuation. CluneTech employs over 1,500 people and is headquartered in Kilkenny, with 35 offices worldwide.

Lorna Conn, Chief Executive Officer,

Lorna Conn joined Cpl plc in October 2017 as Chief Financial Officer and was appointed Deputy CEO in April 2021 and CEO in January 2022. Lorna has previously held senior roles in a number of public companies, residing in both Ireland and America during this time. Lorna is a Chartered Director and placed first in Ireland in her Diploma examination. Lorna is a qualified Chartered Accountant and a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland, having trained with Deloitte. Lorna graduated with first class honours in both the Bachelor of Commerce degree in University College Dublin and the Masters in Accounting in the Michael Smurfit Business School. Lorna is passionate about Ireland, as a location to live and to do business in.

Paul Coulson, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer,
Ardagh Group

Paul Coulson graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a business degree in 1973. He spent five years with Price Waterhouse in London and Dublin and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1978. He then established his own accounting firm before setting up Yeoman International in 1980 and developing it into a significant leasing and structured finance business. In 1998 he became Chairman of the Group and initiated the transformation of Ardagh from a small, single plant operation into a leading global packaging company. Over the last 30 years he has been involved in the creation and development of a number of businesses apart from Yeoman and Ardagh. These include Fanad Fisheries, a leading Irish salmon farming company, and Sterile Technologies. Prior to its sale to Stericycle, Inc. in 2006, Sterile Technologies had been developed into the leading medical waste management company in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Seán Coyle, Group Chief Executive Officer,
Origin Enterprises

Sean Coyle was appointed Group CEO of Origin Enterprises on 1 July 2020. Sean joined Origin in September 2018 as Chief Financial Officer and was appointed to the Board as an Executive Director in October 2018. Sean was previously Group Finance Director of UDG Healthcare plc and also served as Managing Director of UDG’s Healthcare Supply Chain Division. Prior to UDG, Sean was Chief Financial Officer and an Executive Director of Aer Lingus plc. He also spent over ten years in Ryanair Holdings plc, where he held a number of senior management positions. Sean is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland and completed his training with KPMG following his graduation from Trinity College Dublin.

Seán Corkery, Chief Executive Officer,

Sean was appointed as Non-Executive Director and Interim Chief Executive Officer of Datalex in April 2019 and was subsequently appointed as the permanent CEO in October 2019. He also served as Acting Chairman between June and November 2019. Sean is a highly experienced executive having held multiple senior positions in the technology industry including Senior Vice President of Global Operations at Dell Inc; COO at Esat Telecom; Vice President of Global Operations at AST / Samsung and Director of Pacific Operations at Apple Inc. Prior to joining Datalex, Sean was Chairman and CEO at Actavo and he is a non-executive director of a number of private companies.

Eamonn Crowley, Chief Executive Officer, 
Permanent TSB

Before joining PTSB as Chief Financial Officer in 2017, Eamonn worked as Chief Financial Officer at Bank Zachodni WBK S.A. (“BZ WBK”), Banco Santander’s publicly listed Polish retail and commercial bank. (BZ WBK was formerly 70% owned by AIB. Banco Santander acquired that AIB stake in 2010.) During his period as CFO, Eamonn executed the merger of BZ WBK with Kredyt Bank to form Poland’s number three bank, placed over 20% of the bank on the Warsaw Stock Exchange through a Euro 1.2bn secondary IPO and led the acquisition of a controlling stake in Poland’s number one Consumer Bank. Prior to joining Santander, Eamonn worked for the AIB Group in a variety of different roles. Eamonn brings to the Board extensive international banking, accounting, corporate treasury and leadership experience with a significant customer focus which is reflected in the Bank’s Purpose, Ambition and Strategy to build trust and grow a sustainable Bank for the longer-term.

Dr Steve Cutler, Chief Executive Officer,

Dr Steve Cutler was appointed Chief Executive Officer of ICON plc in March 2017, having previously served as Chief Operating Officer for three years. Dr Cutler joined ICON as Group President, Clinical Research Services in 2011 and has been a member of the board since November 2015.

As CEO, Dr Cutler has overseen a period of significant progress for ICON, driven by both strong organic growth and a number of strategic acquisitions, including PRA Health Sciences in 2021. ICON is now the world’s leading clinical research organisation, powered by healthcare intelligence, and employs approximately 40,500 people in over 50 countries.

Throughout his career in the clinical research and pharmaceutical industries, Dr Cutler has held numerous senior leadership positions. These include Chief Executive Officer of Kendle, Senior Vice President, Global Project Management at Quintiles (now IQVIA) and Senior Vice President, Clinical, Medical and Regulatory, also at Quintiles. Prior to joining Quintiles, Dr Cutler worked with Sandoz (now Novartis) in Australia and Europe. He holds a B.Sc. and a Ph.D. from the University of Sydney and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Birmingham (UK).

John Delves, Managing Director,

A leader that likes to disrupt the status quo and rock revenue growth wherever his career has taken him! Having spent eleven years in Denis O Brien’s Digicel John is no stranger to challenging the status quo and disrupting competitive markets. John’s international business experience and acumen drives a focus on rapid revenue growth coupled with a laser focus on customer centricity. As a leader John truly has the ability to harnesses the power of people within all organisations, he has worked in, both at home and abroad, creating and cultivating high performing teams and individuals. Having returned to Ireland in 2018 John has quickly established himself as a business leader who is open, honest and ready to shake things up! ‘it’s all about the team’

John Donnelly, Country Leader: Ireland,

John Donnelly is the Country Leader for Oracle’s operations in Ireland, who employ over 1,000 people here. Having been appointed to the role in 2017 he is responsible for maximising the success of Oracle and its customers in Ireland. He is a successful senior sales leader with a strong track record of high performance, leadership and team development and has held a number of roles since joining Oracle in 2003. John’s other responsibilities include the leadership of the SMB Technology sales business for Oracle UKI, Benelux & Nordics.

John Donohoe, Founder & Group Chief Executive Officer,
Carne Group

John Donohoe is the Founder & Group CEO of Carne Group, the leading digitally driven industry platform to the Global Asset Management Industry and the largest third-party fund management company in the world. Carne is trusted by the world’s leading asset managers, insurance companies, pension funds and wealth managers to manage their governance, compliance, regulatory and substance requirements. Carne provides governance and substance services and solutions for assets of more than $1trillion in AUM. Established in 2004, Carne has 600+ clients and employs more than 600 people across 8 countries globally. In Ireland Carne has offices in Dublin, Cork, Kilkenny and Wexford. Its digital platform, Curator, provides risk and technology driven solutions for investment funds with $2 trillion in AUM.

Robert Finnegan, Chief Executive Officer,
3 Ireland

Robert Finnegan has been Three Ireland’s CEO since the company’s launch in 2005 and in addition to this role, became CEO of Three UK in April 2020. Three Ireland & Three UK are owned by renowned multinational conglomerate CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd, which is committed to innovation and technology with diverse businesses employing over 300,000 people in 50 countries across the world. In Ireland, Three is the largest mobile telecommunications provider with 40.7% market share, has the fastest 4G & 5G networks and delivers excellent customer service from its award-winning Customer Experience Centre in Limerick. In the UK, Three has 10% market share with its customers using 3.5 times more data than the industry average, as well as having three times as much 5G spectrum as any other MNO. As CEO of Three in both countries, Robert is committed to providing its customers with a better connected life through meaningful products, best in class service and a connected network experience. Robert worked for CK Hutchison (formerly Hutchison Whampoa) in Hong Kong for thirteen years before he joined Three Ireland. There he served as CEO of its beverage division, Watson’s, where he strategically led the development of its water business in China and Europe, building it to market leader position. He also initiated and led the divestiture of Powwow to Nestle for US$545m.

Mark Foley, Group Chief Executive Officer,
EirGrid Plc

Mark Foley joined EirGrid Group as Chief Executive in June 2018, having held the role of Managing Director of Land Solutions/ Coillte Enterprise in Coillte since August 2008 where e he led the development of new businesses in renewable energy, telecommunications, land development and land sales. Before that, from November 2000 to August 2008, Mark was Director of Capital Programmes at Dublin Airport Authority. In this role he was responsible for master planning, permitting, planning and delivery of c. €1.5bn in airport infrastructure at Dublin, Shannon and Cork airports. Prior to that Mark held a number of senior executive roles with multinationals in the Speciality Chemicals and Electronics sectors over an 18 year career. Mark has a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering Degree from University College Dublin, a Masters in Industrial Engineering from University College Dublin and has attended Executive development courses in Penn State University and IMD Business School in Lausanne. Mark was recently appointed to the rank of Chevalier in the Ordre national de la Legion d’Honneur by the President of the Republic of France for his role in leading and supporting collaboration between Ireland and France in the field of energy.

Peter Foley, Founder & Chief Executive Officer,

Peter Foley is the CEO and Founder of LetsGetChecked, a global healthcare solutions company that provides the tools to manage health from home through direct access to diagnostic testing, virtual care, and medication delivery for a wide range of health and wellness conditions. Peter has always been passionate about making healthcare patient-led, and allowing consumers to be part of the diagnostic testing process and not once removed. What sparked the idea for LetsGetChecked was a personal experience which resulted in Peter not having access to diagnostic testing in a time of need. Prior to LetsGetChecked, Foley worked in a number of consultancy roles, specializing in the fields of healthcare strategy, planning, and facility development, as well as completing a law degree and masters qualification in ICD-10 codin The purpose of the company is to give people the knowledge that they need to live healthier, happier lives.

Dee Forbes, Director General,

Dee Forbes is Director-General, RTÉ, a role she officially took up on Monday 11th July, 2016. Prior to taking up her role at RTÉ, Dee Forbes was based in London and over 27 years, worked for broadcasters and advertising agency Young and Rubicam. Most recently she was President & Managing Director of Discovery Networks Northern Europe. Dee joined Discovery in 2010 as Head of the UK/Ireland operation and progressively grew her responsibilities to eventually lead the Northern Europe region, which included 18 markets and territories and 27 channels, both free-to-air and subscription, which broadcast to over 276 million households across Northern Europe each month. Before joining Discovery, Dee Forbes led Turner Broadcasting’s business in the UK and Ireland, which consisted of seven entertainment channels, including Cartoon Network, Boomerang and TCM. She spent several years working at Turner in a variety of commercial roles including General Manager for the Nordic/Central and Eastern Europe and EMEA regions and Head of Advertising Sales for Europe. Dee is a former non-executive director of the board of The Irish Times and currently sits on the board of Munster Rugby. A native of Drimoleague in west Cork, Dee is a graduate of UCD where she studied history and politics.

David Forde, Group Chief Executive Officer,

Prior to joining C&C, David was the Managing Director of Heineken UK, a leading producer of beer and cider brands in the UK market, as well as a significant pub operator, with approximately 2,500 outlets in its estate. David worked with Heineken for 31 years and had extensive experience in senior leadership positions across the business. He started his career with the Sales and Marketing team at Heineken Ireland, before gaining international experience in the Netherlands and then Poland, where he was Marketing Director. Progressing to senior leadership, David was appointed General Manager of Heineken UK in 2007 and played a key role in Heineken’s acquisition of Scottish & Newcastle in 2008 and the subsequent integration of the two businesses. In 2009, David returned to Heineken Ireland as Managing Director, before being appointed Managing Director of Heineken UK in 2013.

Business & Finance CEO 100 (alphabetical by surname):

View part one (A–F)

View part two (F–K)

View part three (K–M)

View part four (M–V)