Thursday 14 December 2017

Greencore loses CFO to Travis Perkins

Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney and chief financial officer Alan Williams at the AGM in Dublin
Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney and chief financial officer Alan Williams at the AGM in Dublin
Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

Greencore chief financial officer (CFO) Alan Williams is to leave the Irish food firm to take up the same role at UK building materials group Travis Perkins.

Mr Williams, who has spent nearly six years at the company, is to be replaced by Eoin Tonge who has overseen the firm's UK grocery business since 2014.

The UCD graduate will take up the role on October 3 when he will also be appointed as a director of the company. Greencore said his predecessor will stay at the company until the end of 2016 to ensure a smooth transition.

His appointment comes ten years after joining Greencore as capital markets director with responsibility for treasury, investor relations and communications. Since then he was promoted to group strategy and corporate development director in 2009.

In 2014 Mr Tonge was appointed managing director of Greencore’s grocery division in the UK and has been a member of the firm’s executive board since its inception in 2012.

Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney said he was delighted with the appointment.

“In addition to his strong operational leadership of our grocery division, Eoin has played a critical role in shaping our group's ‘Food to Go’ strategy, led the delivery of the Uniq acquisition, executed several key acquisitions in the US, and spent nearly four years as a leader in our central finance team,” he said.

The Uniq deal was a major coup for Greencore five years ago. In 2011 the company splashed out £113m (€131m) on what was then a main rival in the UK.

Elsewhere in the company Mr Tonge’s former role of MD of Greencore’s UK grocery business will be filled by Nigel Blakely, currently the division’s finance director.

“Greencore is committed to developing talent at all levels, and Eoin and Nigel are excellent examples of leaders that have progressed through our group with consistently strong delivery in a variety of finance, strategy, project and general management roles,” Mr Coveney said.

Mr Williams’ departure comes after Greencore exploited the weak sterling to snap up a UK sandwich business for £17.9m in July.

Shares in the company were hit significantly post-Brexit but have normalised, increasing by 18.6pc to £3.40 since the referendum.

The Greencore boss also paid homage to his outgoing CFO.

“We would like to thank Alan for his outstanding contribution to the growth and success of Greencore since he joined us in 2011. His judgement, financial expertise, professionalism, integrity and commitment have made him a valued colleague during his time here.”

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