Saturday 1 October 2016

Ex-Paddy Power online boss joins Gaelectric as CFO

Published 04/10/2015 | 02:30

Renewable energy company Gaelectric has appointed Shane Doherty - a former boss of Paddy Power's online business - as its chief financial officer
Renewable energy company Gaelectric has appointed Shane Doherty - a former boss of Paddy Power's online business - as its chief financial officer

Renewable energy company Gaelectric has appointed Shane Doherty - a former boss of Paddy Power's online business - as its chief financial officer (CFO).

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The move follows the appointment of Barry Gavin, who previously held the CFO role, as group chief operating officer as the company aims to almost triple its wind-generating capacity by the end of the year.

Doherty is also a former European finance director at Paddy Power. Before that he was at Eircom - now Eir - in a variety of roles, including a period as acting CFO. He also spent time as corporate finance director, where he was responsible for guiding Eircom through the largest debt restructuring in Europe in 2012, and leading the sale of its Phonewatch business.

Gaelectric CEO Brendan McGrath said Doherty "brings extensive change and transactional expertise to the Gaelectric team earned in highly competitive commercial markets".

McGrath also made a statement on reports about Gaelectric's interaction with the Robinson family.

Former Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson's son Gareth has worked with Gaelectric.

On Friday, the Belfast Newsletter reported that McGrath had attended a DUP fundraising dinner in 2008. The DUP said many companies attend its dinners and that there was nothing irregular about its interaction with Gaelectric.

"We operate in an exciting and dynamic sector that challenges most of the pre-existing understanding of how we generate and use energy. A large part of what we do is changing hearts and minds.

"We have always briefed public representatives, policy makers, local communities and our other stakeholders on what we are doing," McGrath said. "Northern Ireland is very important to our business. It is also a society that is itself emerging and trying to normalise after many decades of conflict.

"Development projects in Northern Ireland experience excessive delays in comparison to projects in the UK or the Republic and this is symptomatic of an evolving local responsibility for devolved powers.

"Our engagements with policy makers, public representatives and local communities have, at their essence, the goal of normalising the process so Northern Ireland can progress to a level playing pitch.

"Our engagements are a matter of public record as is evident from the information that has been published. We are all aware of the current difficulties with the peace process in Northern Ireland.

"It is evident that some forces are not supportive of that process and we and other companies find ourselves being used as public footballs in this ongoing point-scoring," McGrath added.

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