Friday 6 December 2019

Former Taoiseach Brian Cowen appointed to board of Topaz

His first major appointment since he resigned as Fianna Fail leader in 2011

Brian Cowen spoke on budgetary policy at Georgetown. Photo: Damien Eagers
Brian Cowen spoke on budgetary policy at Georgetown. Photo: Damien Eagers

Sarah Stack

Former Taoiseach Brian Cowen has been appointed to the board of Topaz.

It is the first major appointment for the former leader since he resigned as leader of Fianna Fail in January 2011 ahead of the general elections.

Businessman Denis O’Brien will also sit at the helm of the energy group, which is the largest service station operator and convenience retailer in the country.

The company employs 1,700 people at 330 sites nationwide.

Topaz was taken over by Mr O’Brien in December, after he bought the loans from IBRC. He is also the largest shareholder in Independent News & Media (INM) which owns the Irish Independent.

Dell veteran Sean Corkery; former AIB boss Colm Doherty; Lucy Gaffney - a board member at INM - and UCD commerce graduate Emmet O'Neill, who recently sold his company Smiles Dental for €36m, have also been appointed as new non-executives directors.

Topaz chief financial officer, Niall Devereux, will also be on the board.

"The new directors bring a unique level of expertise and knowledge which will be invaluable in the continued growth and expansion of Topaz," said John Callaghan, chairman.

Topaz is one of Ireland’s largest privately owned companies, with annual turnover of over €3bn and one million transactions every month.

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