Business Irish

Friday 20 September 2019

Ardagh taps up KPMG's Murphy to senior role

On the move: KPMG managing partner Shaun Murphy is joining Ardagh Group
On the move: KPMG managing partner Shaun Murphy is joining Ardagh Group
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Ardagh Group has named former KPMG Ireland managing partner Shaun Murphy as its chief operating officer.

He will report to Ardagh's billionaire main shareholder, Paul Coulson. Two years ago, Mr Coulson stepped in to take over direct management of Ardagh Group as chairman and CEO following the surprise departure of CEO Ian Curley after just over a year in the job.

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Mr Coulson, Ardagh's founder, is widely expected to take a step back from day-to-day management at some point.

Mr Murphy (52) was a partner at KPMG for almost 20 years before joining Ardagh. He became managing partner in 2012 and was re-elected for a second three-year term in 2015.

The announcement he was joining was made as Ardagh reported revenue of $2.3bn (€2bn), down 3pc year-on-year in the three months to 30 June. Adjusted earnings at the company were up 1pc to $395m.

Mr Coulson said the performance was "in line with expectations".

Last week the packaging giant said it plans to combine its food and speciality metal packaging business with Exal Corporation to create a new joint venture called Trivium Packaging.

The move, which remains subject to competition authority clearance, will create one of the largest metal packaging companies in the world - 57pc of which will be owned by Ardagh.

Mr Coulson will become the chairman of Trivium, while Exal chief executive Michael Mapes will take on the role of Trivium's CEO.

Ardagh will receive approximately $2.5bn in cash proceeds under the plans, which it will use to reduce its $8.1bn of debt.

That's expected to see Ardagh's leverage cut by a "half a turn" from 5.2 times to 4.7 times earnings.

Irish Independent

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