New and notable appointments at KPMG, ULI Ireland, Furthr, Bank of Ireland, Respond and Matheson LLP

By Business & Finance
09 March 2023
Pictured: Seamus Hand, Managing Partner, KPMG in Ireland and Wes Jesson, Managing Director Construction Advisory, KPMG

There were new and notable appointments this week at KPMG, ULI Ireland, Furthr, Bank of Ireland, Respond and Matheson LLP

Wes Jesson, Managing Director Construction Advisory

KPMG Construction Advisory has appointed Wes Jesson as its new managing director. KPMG Construction Advisory is a provider of construction project management, cost consultancy, project controls and mechanical & electrical cost management services, and with this appointment, the business is positioning itself for the next phase of growth.With the renaming of KPMG Construction Advisory from KMCS@KPMG, and appointing Wes Jesson as managing director, the company is moving in a new direction with an intention for expansion and a broadening of advisory services. Even with new roles and industry expansion, founder of KMCS Nigel Spence will remain senior consultant to the business. Jesson has over 18 years of experience within the construction industry including large-scale infrastructure, commercial and residential projects in Ireland, the UK and the Middle East, and more recently key account management for international mission-critical clients in Ireland and across Europe.

The team in KPMG Construction Advisory has an extensive background in construction project management, cost consultancy, mechanical & electrical cost management, and consultancy services and has worked on a diverse range of projects both locally in Ireland and globally throughout the UK, Mainland Europe, and Asia.

Jesson said: “I’m excited to be leading the great team of professionals at KPMG Construction Advisory and building on the already strong reputation the business has built up in the construction sector. We manage all aspects of our client’s projects and help ensure successful project delivery both from a cost and schedule perspective. We know that the market really values quality, efficiency and certainty in the planning and execution of all aspects of major construction projects and we’re committed to fully delivering
on those expectations. We’re excited for the future of the business and our ability to scale and grow our team to offer key construction consultancy services to local and international clients with the full support of the wider KPMG Business.”

Seamus Hand, Managing Partner of KPMG in Ireland said: “We’re delighted to welcome Wes to KPMG. We have ambitious plans for our Construction Advisory team to further support the increasing international client demand for independent, experienced cost and project management advice on their construction projects. I’d also like to recognise the role that Nigel has had in founding and building the current success of the business. I’m confident that Wes and his expanding team will be well positioned to meet the ever-changing and exciting needs of our clients across a number of industry sectors.”

Marie Hunt, Chairperson
ULI Ireland

Pictured: Marie Hunt, Chairperson, ULI Ireland

ULI Europe has appointed Marie Hunt, Head of Research at IPUT, as their first female chairperson of the Urban Land Institute in Ireland. Hunt has been a member of the ULI Ireland National Council since 2015 and will succeed Kevin Nowlan following the successful completion of his two-year term as chairperson. Prior to IPUT, Hunt led CBRE’s Research and Consulting function in Ireland for more than 27 years. A former winner of the ‘Management Professional of the Year’ at the Image Magazine Businesswoman of the Year awards, she is a Fellow of the Society of Chartered Surveyors in Ireland.

Speaking of the appointment, Lisette van Doorn, CEO of ULI Europe, commented: “We are delighted to announce Marie’s appointment as the new chairperson of ULI Ireland. She brings a wealth of experience and knowledge of the real estate industry in Ireland and Europe. We look forward to working with Marie and the ULI Ireland National Council in furthering the mission of ULI in Ireland over the next two years. I’d also like to thank Kevin for chairing ULI Ireland over the last two years. Under his leadership, ULI Ireland has continued to develop initiatives in Ireland, including the ULI Excellence in Placemaking Awards in conjunction with CBRE, the Urban Plan project in secondary schools, and our Young Leaders Mentorship program.”

Marie Hunt, Head of Research at IPUT Real Estate, commented: “It is an honour to have been appointed as the chairperson of the Urban Land Institute in Ireland for the next two years and, in particular, to be ULI Ireland’s first female chairperson. ULI’s mission – to shape the future of the built environment so that it has a meaningful and transformative impact in communities and urban spaces – is perfectly aligned with my role at IPUT. ULI continues to go from strength to strength in Ireland with its informative events, covering a wide range of interesting and topical issues, now firmly established as ‘must attend’ events in the Irish real estate calendar. ULI brings together both public and private sector stakeholders from a range of disciplines, to share ideas, thought leadership and best practice in order to inform debate and affect change.”

Maoiliosa O’Culachain, Chief Executive Officer

Pictured: Maoiliosa O’Culachain, CEO, Furthr

Furthr has appointed Maoiliosa O’Culachain as its new CEO, succeeding Michael Culligan who held the role for 7 years. O’Culachain has had an interesting career, and as an entrepreneur, he is familiar with the challenges and opportunities of the start-up journey. He will lead Furthr as it helps even more start-ups to scale export-focused businesses from Ireland. In his new role, O’Culachain will be responsible for all Furthr services and operations – including Furthr Consulting, Furthr VC, The Guinness Enterprise Centre, The Innovation Exchange, Creative Skillnet and Furthr Festival, leading the organisation as it continues to help ambitious founders to successfully grow export-oriented businesses in Ireland.

O’Culachain  is an entrepreneur with a proven track record of establishing, funding and scaling businesses, such as Global Shares plc which he co-founded. He has a wealth of experience in corporate transactions and an in-depth understanding of the mentality needed to build a leading European start-up, having worked with Nasdaq Private Market as a European Business Development Director and as Ireland Market Advisor. He also managed the Eircom Employee Share Ownership Plan (ESOP) and was a consultant with PwC.

In partnership with Enterprise Ireland, Furthr works closely with state agencies and private sector investors to support founders and assist internationally focused start-ups. In 2023, across the organisation, Furthr expects to provide game-changing impacts to 1,500 founders to accelerate their businesses, secure investment and connect to valuable networks. Some of the previous success stories which have been supported by Furthr include NewsWhip, LearnUpon, HealthBeacon and Zipp Mobility.

O’Culachain commented: “By any objective measure, Furthr is a great success story, and I am thrilled to have been selected by the board to lead the next phase of its journey. My aim is to create an environment where Ireland’s most innovative minds are supported and encouraged to meet the needs of emerging and growing global markets. Success breeds success, but the next generation of start-ups will look nothing like what we have seen before. My focus will therefore be on ensuring that Irish start-ups are competing in all the right areas and have access to the best supports, including funding. I am motivated by the vision of Ireland as a real hotbed for innovation and businesses driven by a growth mindset.

I am very excited to have the opportunity to lead the exceptional team we have in Furthr. We have a unique blend of experiences and offerings which enable founders to drive growth, get funded and build powerful connections. Together we can realise our purpose and empower ambitious founders to start and scale their businesses in Ireland, and empower them to thrive.”

Gavin Kelly, CEO of Corporate and Markets Division
Bank of Ireland

Pictured: Gavin Kelly, CEO of Corporate and Markets Division, Bank of Ireland

Bank of Ireland has announced the appointment of Gavin Kelly as CEO of its Corporate and Markets Division. The Bank of Ireland Corporate and Markets Division includes more than 1,100 colleagues, of which approximately 150 are spread across Britain, France, Germany, Spain and the US. The expanded Division includes Ireland’s leading corporate banking services across property, aviation, energy, Semi-State and Government lending, combined with acquisition finance, treasury, markets and FX services. The Division also includes a wide range of domestic business lending and a sectors team which specialist knowledge in healthcare, hospitality, retail, property, motor and technology. Aligned with this appointment, the Bank is expanding Corporate and Markets to include Business Banking, previously part of the Retail Ireland Division. This change will bring Bank of Ireland’s business and corporate banking into one centralised structure, with a team of more than 1,100 dedicated to serving a wide range of SMEs and larger national and international corporations. The Division also includes wholesale financial markets services, specialised acquisition finance, and property lending activities. Across the entire footprint of the Group – Ireland, the UK, France, Germany, Spain, and the US – Corporate and Markets has total customer lending of more than €27 billion.

Kelly has most recently served as Chief Executive of the Retail Ireland Division of the Bank of Ireland. He also served as Interim Group Chief Executive from September to November 2022.

Myles O’Grady, Group CEO of Bank of Ireland commented: “I am delighted to announce Gavin Kelly as the new CEO of an expanded Corporate and Markets Division. Gavin brings a wealth of skill and experience to this role, and this will be invaluable to this important part of our business in the years ahead. Our aims for our Corporate and Markets business are to strongly support our customers, help grow the domestic economy, and enhance Ireland’s position as a business leader on the world stage. In doing this, we will also strengthen Bank of Ireland’s domestic and international position in business and corporate banking.”

Gavin Kelly, CEO of Corporate and Markets commented: “Many of our Business and Corporate customers are at the heart of the Irish economy. They count amongst them some of the most recognised and successful Irish businesses internationally. And they include international clients served from our footprint across the UK, EU, and US. We want to help all of our customers make progress, so they can start, grow and expand their business wherever they are based. As a leading Irish financial services company with a strong international footprint, we also want to harness the potential of our team to the fullest. This new structure allows us to do two key things – offer a one-stop shop for businesses at all stages of their development, and build our own business at home and abroad.”

Olivia McCann, Director of Legal Services and Compliance,

Pictured: Olivia McCann, Director of Legal Services and Compliance, Respond

Respond, one of Ireland’s Approved Housing Bodies and community service providers, is pleased to announce the appointments of Olivia McCann and Parag Joglekar to senior director roles within Respond’s Executive Management Team, reporting to the CEO. The organisation said that the two appointments further enhance the skill and experience of the Executive Management Team. Respond is currently recruiting for a Director of People and Culture.

Olivia McCann joins Respond as Director of Legal Services and Compliance bringing considerable experience of the commercial property sector to the team. Her role with Respond will involve managing the in-house legal team of solicitors and legal service provision by external partners, ensuring compliance with state and company law, internal company policies and appropriate due diligence for the acquisition of homes. McCann will also act as Company Secretary.

A 30-years qualified solicitor, she joins from McCann Morrissey Clarke, where she specialised in commercial property law, including all aspects of residential property, landlord and tenant law, advising a variety of business sectors. She is the current President of the Waterford Law Society. McCann qualified with McCann FitzGerald Solicitors in 1992 and in the UK in 1998 subsequently working with London Law Firm, Clifford Chance and Canary Wharf Group plc.

Parag Joglekar, Director of Investment and Development

Parag Joglekar has been promoted to Director of Investment and Development at Respond. A registered architect in Ireland and the UK, he has 25 years of experience in urban design, private and public housing, regeneration, commercial projects and risk and asset management, in addition to managing design and construction contracts across Ireland, the UK and India. Having joined Respond in 2001, he leads Respond’s multi-disciplinary Development Team of 20 construction professionals, responsible for Respond’s current social and cost rental homes building programme which has a value of more than €1.5bn.

Commenting on the new appointments, Declan Dunne, CEO of Respond said: “I am delighted to welcome Olivia to our senior Executive Management Team and mark Parag’s promotion to Director of Investment and Development. Both Olivia and Parag have proven strategic, organisational and people leadership expertise and exceptional sectoral experience. Respond is committed to delivering the much-needed 1,453 high-quality, social and affordable homes that we have in construction across the country right now. Olivia’s and Parag’s combined experience and expertise will undoubtedly strengthen our capacity to achieve our goals.”

Matheson LLP

Matheson LLP has promoted fourteen lawyers to partner across nine different practice areas.  The appointments bring the total number of partners and tax principals in the firm to 121. The new partners, who have already taken up their positions, have been appointed in the following practice areas; Asset Management; Commercial Litigation and Dispute Resolution; Commercial Real Estate; Corporate M&A; Energy and Infrastructure; Finance and Capital Markets; International Business Group; Financial Institutions Group; and Tax.

Pictured (from l-r): Aisling Kavanagh (Commercial Litigation and Dispute Resolution); Eunan Hession (Asset Management); Hilda Wrixon (Commercial Real Estate); Dara Higgins (Tax); and Conor Blennerhassett (Corporate Energy and Infrastructure).

Pictured (from l-r): Ian O’Mara (Corporate Financial Institutions Group); Robert Barrett (Corporate M&A); Gráinne Boyle (International Business Group); and Robert Maloney Derham (Corporate M&A).

Pictured (from l-r): Alan Bunbury (Finance and Capital Markets); Enda Garvey (Corporate M&A); Orlaith Finan (Asset Management); and Finnbahr Boyle (Finance and Capital Markets).

Robert Barrett, Director of Legal Services and Compliance
Matheson LLP

Robert advises both international and domestic companies on corporate law matters, including private M&A, shareholders’ agreements and joint ventures, equity fundraisings, reorganisations and general commercial matters.

Conor Blennerhassett, Corporate Energy and Infrastructure
Matheson LLP

Conor Blennerhassett advises on large-scale infrastructure, energy and construction projects, with specialised experience in contract negotiation, risk allocation, development structuring, financing, transactional matters (including due diligence and transaction document negotiation), corporate law matters and operational advice (including regulatory issues and operational problem solving).

Finnbahr Boyle, Finance and Capital Markets
Matheson LLP

Originally from New Zealand and currently based in the firm’s London office,  Finnbahr Boyle has experience across multiple jurisdictions advising lenders, sponsors and borrowers spanning a range of industries in relation to financing transactions (both domestic and cross-border) including bilateral and syndicated loans, leveraged and acquisition finance, fund finance and restructurings.

Gráinne Boyle, International Business Group
Matheson LLP

Gráinne Boyle advises international clients on Irish legal issues associated with doing business in and through Ireland.  She practices Irish corporate law, with a primary focus on advising US and other international clients doing business in and from Ireland.

Alan Bunbury, Finance and Capital Markets
Matheson LLP

Currently based in the firm’s London office, Alan Bunbury advises on all aspects of debt capital markets transactions with an Irish connection, including collateralised loan obligation transactions, asset-backed securities, repackagings, asset-backed commercial paper programmes, corporate bond issuances and segregated managed account structures.

Michelle Daly, Tax
Matheson LLP

Michelle Daly practices in Matheson’s tax department, primarily advising clients in the financial sector, including asset management, aviation leasing, securitisation and debt capital markets and insurance.  Daly has spent time working in Matheson’s New York office and has particular expertise in advising Irish-domiciled investment funds, including UCITS and QIAIFs, and their managers.  Daly also advises many fund managers who have invested in aviation assets and alternative asset classes such as pharmaceutical royalties.  In recent years, she has worked on the establishment of a number of large direct lending fund platforms which are domiciled in Ireland.

Orlaith Finan, Asset Management 
Matheson LLP

Orlaith Finan practices financial services law and advises many of the world’s leading financial institutions, investment banks, asset management companies and service providers carrying on business in Ireland or through Irish vehicles.

Enda Garvey, Corporate M&A
Matheson LLP

Enda Garvey specialises in international and domestic private M&A, private equity transactions and corporate reorganisations and debt and equity fundraisings.  He has extensive private equity experience and has advised on many of the most high-profile investments made by international private equity funds in Ireland in the past 5 years.

Eunan Hession, Asset Management
Matheson LLP

Eunan Hession practices financial services law and advises many of the world’s leading financial institutions, investment banks and asset management companies carrying on business through Irish-domiciled investment funds and Irish-domiciled management companies.

Dara Higgins, Tax
Matheson LLP

Dara Higgins advises clients on VAT, Customs and Trade law, Excise and Relevant Contracts Tax.  He specialises in Indirect Taxes across all industry sectors including, real estate and construction, financial services, import/export, technology, aviation, energy and pharmaceuticals.

Aisling Kavanagh, Commercial Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Matheson LLP

Aisling Kavanagh is a commercial litigator specialising in insurance disputes. She manages high-value, large-scale complex disputes, and has acted in high-profile litigation in both the English and Irish Courts. Before joining Matheson, Kavanagh spent over six years as a litigator with a leading firm in London, where she acted in energy, construction and insurance disputes.

Robert Maloney Derham, Corporate M&A
Matheson LLP

Robert Maloney Derham advises on all aspects of corporate transactions (both domestic and international) including mergers and acquisitions (both strategic and private equity), venture capital, shareholder arrangements, equity fundraisings, joint ventures, corporate reorganisations and restructurings and general commercial matters.

Ian O’Mara, Corporate FIG
Matheson LLP

Based in the firm’s new London office, Ian O’Mara specialises in financial services regulation.  He has advised payment institutions, electronic money institutions, credit institutions, MiFID investment firms, and other financial institutions and investors in the financial services sector on compliance with regulatory standards and the impact of new regulatory developments at Irish and EU levels.

Hilda Wrixon, Commerical Real Estate
Matheson LLP

Hilda Wrixon regularly advises US technology and pharmaceutical companies on real estate aspects of the establishment and expansion of their Irish and EMEA branches and negotiated related lease documentation. She is experienced in data centre development and leasing as well as in related site acquisition and represents several clients in the industrial and logistics sector in negotiating agreements for lease and leases of bespoke mixed-use industrial and office space.

Michael Jackson, Managing Partner of Matheson said:  “We are delighted to welcome these 14 talented lawyers to our partnership.  It is particularly pleasing to see such a large and diverse range of practice areas represented in these appointments, something which reflects the broad sectoral composition of our client base and the continued growth and success of the firm across all practice areas.”