Irish businessman Howard Kilroy dies age 83

Business | Tue 21 May | Author – Business & Finance
Howard Kilroy
Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Mr Kilroy was formerly financial controller, chief operations director and President of the Smurfit Group

Howard Kilroy, an accountant by profession, is best known for his time at the Smurfit Group, starting out as financial controller in 1973, at what was then Jefferson Smurfit. Michael Smurfit, on his retirement in 2007 said about Mr Kilroy that he “could not have succeeded” and was “extremely lucky” to work with him.

His non-executive roles included chairman of Waterford Glass and a non-executive director at cement company CRH and retailer Arnotts and he served as Governor of Bank of Ireland’s court of directors from 1991 to 2000.

CEO of Business & Finance Ian Hyland said about the passing of Howard Kilroy,

Howard Kilroy was a titan of Irish business and a catalyst in the truest sense.

Reacting to the news, Ibec CEO Danny McCoy said:

Often described as a central architect to the global success of the now Smurfit Kappa Group, Howard’s assured leadership and dynamic vision played a key role in promoting Ireland internationally as a place to do business as our national enterprise model went from strength to strength. He leaves behind a legacy of professionalising, modernising and internationalising Irish business.