New and notable appointments at Eversheds Sutherland Ireland, BDO Ireland and Bank of Ireland

By Business & Finance
28 January 2021
Pictured: Deirdre Nicholl, Chief Operating Officer of Corporate Banking, Bank of Ireland

This week sees new and notable appointments at Eversheds Sutherland Ireland, BDO Ireland and Bank of Ireland

Alan Connell, Managing Partner,
Eversheds Sutherland Ireland

Pictured: Alan Connell, Managing Partner, Eversheds Sutherland Ireland


Global law firm Eversheds Sutherland has announced the appointment of Alan Connell as the new Managing Partner of its Irish offices, following his election by the firm’s partners.

Alan, who is also Head of the firm’s Tax Group, has been elected to serve a four-year term as Managing Partner based at the firm’s Dublin office from the 1st of January 2021.  Alan joined Eversheds Sutherland in 2017 as a Partner and Head of the firm’s Tax practice. Before his appointment as Managing Partner, Alan held the role of Head of the Firm’s Commercial Department.  In addition to being a member of the firm’s Executive Committee, Alan is also a member of the board of Eversheds Sutherland (Europe) Limited.

Alan is widely recognised as a leading international tax lawyer, with extensive experience in corporate tax law and has advised on some of the largest inward investment and restructuring projects in Ireland. He primarily advises international financial institutions and corporations (including Fortune 100 companies) doing business in and from Ireland and is standing tax counsel to numerous international organisations in respect of their Irish operations.

Before joining Eversheds Sutherland, Alan was a Partner in the tax department of a large Irish corporate law firm and prior to that, he was a tax associate with Mayer Brown LLP in its London office.

Alan Connell, Managing Partner of Eversheds Sutherland Ireland said, “Eversheds Sutherland brings an unrivalled depth and breadth of skills and industry knowledge to help clients solve their most complex challenges, with a commitment to the highest levels of quality and professionalism.

“Irish and international businesses face an era of substantial change, challenge and uncertainty in areas where Eversheds Sutherland is ideally placed to advise, not least from the complexities arising as a result of Brexit and COVID-19.  We are committed to anticipating, managing and leading the response to this, in order to achieve continued success for our clients and for the firm.

“It is an enormous privilege to have been elected to serve as Managing Partner to lead the firm and build on our established market position as Ireland’s largest and leading global law practice with an all-island presence and multidisciplinary expertise.”

Mark O’Sullivan, Partner of Research & Development Incentives,
BDO Ireland

Pictured: Mark O’Sullivan, Partner Research & Development Incentives, BDO Ireland

BDO, an Audit, Tax, Advisory and Consultancy firm, has announced the appointment of Mark O’Sullivan as the new partner for its Research & Development (“R&D”) Incentives practice. This announcement marks the first appointment of a dedicated R&D Incentives partner with primary science and technology qualifications in Ireland.

Mark specialises in securing R&D funding for companies through government grants and tax incentives, including RD&I grants, R&D tax credits, and the Knowledge Development Box (“KDB”) regime.

Mark’s technical background, coupled with his tax advisory expertise, positions him as one of the leading R&D Incentive advisors in Ireland. This unique knowledge-base enables him to offer strategic and informed advice on the specific technicalities of these R&D Incentives, whilst also successfully managing its tax and financial elements. Since joining BDO, he has been involved in the successful qualification of over €500 million of expenditure for R&D tax credits and grant funding and has been involved in many of the largest R&D tax credit claims ever made in Ireland.

As partner, Mark will lead BDO Ireland’s R&D Incentives practice – Ireland’s largest engineering led practice and one of the most successful and widely regarded in the country. The practice is one of the most experienced in Ireland, combining engineering and scientific experts with taxation professionals offering clients a unique, robust and highly efficient, end-to-end service.

Mark is a member of Engineers Ireland and holds professional qualifications in Mechanical Engineering, Manufacturing & Design Engineering, Medical Physics and Computing. He is also a qualified Chartered Tax Advisor and has a significant amount of Revenue audit experience.

Speaking on the appointment, BDO Managing Partner Michael Costello said: “I am delighted to announce the appointment of Mark O’Sullivan as partner to our R&D Incentives practice. Promoting from within and attracting professionals with diverse educational and professional backgrounds is a key element of our business strategy. It ensures that we have the right blend of expertise and are always looking for new ways to add value for our clients.

Speaking on his appointment, Mark O’Sullivan said: “I am very pleased to be joining the BDO Partnership and keen to build on the strong market position that we have successfully established in the R&D Incentives sector. It’s an exciting time for R&D in Ireland as the number of organisations engaging with our national R&D Incentive schemes continues to rise and the pace of change in science and technology continues to grow.”

Michael Lauhoff, Head of Corporate Banking Ireland & Northern Ireland, Deirdre Nicholl, Chief Operating Officer of Corporate Banking and Susan Brown, Head of Digital & Operations
Bank of Ireland

Bank of Ireland has announced appointments for three key senior positions across its Corporate Banking business. The roles filled include Head of Corporate Banking Ireland & Northern Ireland, Chief Operating Officer and Head of Digital & Operations.

Speaking on the appointments, Tom Hayes, Chief Executive at Bank of Ireland Corporate Banking and Markets commented: “I am delighted to welcome Michael to his new role as Head of Corporate Banking Ireland & Northern Ireland this month.  Deirdre and Susan will be taking on these crucial roles across our Corporate Banking business as we move into 2021. Enabling our colleagues to grow professionally is something we treat as a key priority at Bank of Ireland – these three colleagues have excelled in their current roles and are now ready to assume new responsibilities and support the future success and trajectory of the bank. Collectively, they have a wealth of experience and knowledge across their respective areas of expertise and I look forward to seeing them progress in their new roles, help their new teams to thrive and ensure that we are delivering excellent service for our customers.”

Pictured: Michael Lauhoff, Head of Corporate Banking Ireland & Northern Ireland

Effective January 2021, Michael Lauhoff is appointed Head of Corporate Banking Ireland & Northern Ireland, with responsibility for the critical agenda of driving the Corporate Banking growth strategy across the island of Ireland and supporting the bank’s customers.  In the current landscape, the role will have a particular focus on helping those who were most financially impacted by Covid-19.

Michael has held a number of leadership and senior management roles within Bank of Ireland, most recently in his role as Director of Business Banking. In this former role, Michael held responsibility for strategy development and implementation for the SME and motor franchise business, leading significant business transformation and growing the bank’s market share of SME lending.

Michael is a Fellow of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants, a Certified Bank Director, holds a Bachelor of Business Studies and a Diploma in Financial Services.

Deirdre Nicholl has been appointed to the role of Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Corporate Banking. Deirdre has worked in Bank of Ireland for over six years and is currently a senior leader within the Group Internal Audit team, where she has held the dual role of Deputy Group Chief Internal Auditor and Head of Audit since 2018.

In this newly established position, Deirdre will take on a very exciting and strategically important agenda, leading the transformation journey within the division and overseeing Bank of Ireland’s pivot to a Digital Relationship banking model. Deirdre will start her new role in early 2021.

Deirdre is a fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland, holds a Degree in Business Studies and a Diploma in International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).

Pictured: Susan Brown, Head of Digital & Operations

Susan Brown has been appointed to the position of Head of Digital & Operations. Susan is currently Director of the Lending Support Unit in the bank’s Property Finance Group, where she has responsibility for a wide range of business and lending support activities. Susan has also held various roles in Property Finance, including Director (Portfolio) for several years, with her earlier career spent in Private Banking and Business Banking.

Susan will lead the establishment of the new Digital & Operations team within the COO function, while developing a digital strategy for Corporate Banking. Susan holds a Degree in Business Studies, Diploma in Financial Services and a Postgraduate in Managing and Leading People.