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Former outspoken central banker Fiona Muldoon takes finance job at FBD

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Fiona Muldoon. Photo: Collins

Fiona Muldoon. Photo: Collins

Fiona Muldoon. Photo: Collins

Remember Fiona Muldoon? She was the high profile head of credit institutions & insurance supervision at the Central Bank, who announced her resignation just over a year ago and left last May.

She has been appointed group finance director of insurance giant FBD. She'll take up the post in March, after the group's preliminary results for 2014 are released.

And they're not expected to be too impressive. The company has already warned that it expects to make an operating loss for the year as a result of a challenging claims environment, predicting in November that the group is guiding a full year 2014 operating loss per share of zero to ten cent.

FBD's share price has almost halved in the past 12 months, falling from €19.30 in January of last year to €10.91 by mid-afternoon yesterday.

It is the eighth worst performer over the last year on the Irish Stock Exchange.

So Muldoon, inset, will have her work cut out.

She hit the headlines during her time in Dame Street when she compared top bankers to surly teenagers, for their failure to get on top of the mortgage crisis.

One assumes she won't be as candid about her bosses in FBD if they fail to stem the share price fall.

Hotel honcho takes D4 helm

From the deserts of Dubai to the desserts of Dublin. The luxury InterContinental Dublin, formerly the Four Seasons Hotel in Ballsbridge, Dublin, has a new boss with a track record as a provider of seriously luxurious accommodation.

JP Kavanagh is returning to his native city in February to become general manager of the five-star hotel.

As the Four Seasons, the Dublin 4 hotel was a boom era hotspot, hosting visiting dignitaries and celebrities in its suites and bedrooms, and corporate AGMs and gala dinners and lunches in its vast function rooms.

In recent years it has been in danger of being eclipsed in the fashion stakes by newer rivals, notably the Marker Hotel, in the newly fashionable Docklands area.

With new branding and a new manager the Ballsbridge behemoth is fighting back.

JP Kavanagh was most recently general manager of the Sheraton Dubai Mall of the Emirates Hotel.

The Trinity College and Dublin College of Catering graduate previously worked at top hotels including The Connaught in London, The Clarence and The Westin.

Heineken's discounts

The Punt notes with interest that Heineken's British pub leasing business is to increase the discount it offers to lessees on Heineken products by at least 4pc over the next few years.

The move comes off the back of a recent UK parliamentary vote that's set to put paid to the so-called "beer tie", an arrangement whereby publicans who lease pubs from brewers are forced to buy their beer from that brewer.

Word on the street is that Heineken also offered a discount on Foster's lager to Wetherspoon as part of the negotiations to resolve their row over pricing, though neither Wetherspoon nor Heineken would confirm that.

The Punt had been rather enjoying the Wetherspoon-Heineken spat and is almost sorry to see it end.

The UK pub chain certainly knows how to make an impact and drive a hard bargain, and publicans' feathers are bound to have been ruffled by its ultra-cheap pint prices.

Wetherspoon plans to open 30 pubs here over the next five years, probably not enough to drive down prices across the board. But the company, chaired by Northern Irishman Tim Martin, is bound to provide plenty of entertainment.

Irish Independent