Business Irish

Tuesday 12 December 2017

The Punt: CRH likes its execs to learn the business, brick by brick

CRH likes to ease its chief executives into place. Preferably over the course of a decade or two. The building materials giant has announced that its chief operating officer, Albert Manifold (pictured below left), is to take up the reins as chief executive when incumbent Myles Lee retires.

Manifold, who joined CRH in 1998, was tipped as the favoured contender for the post and his anointment follows a CRH trend evident in both his predecessors.

Schull-native Lee joined CRH in 1982, when he was 28 and had a degree in civil engineering. He was appointed CEO in 2009. His predecessor, Liam O'Mahony, joined CRH in 1971, when he was 25. He was made chief executive in 2000.

"I probably equipped myself well in the early stages through focus on education," said Mr O'Mahony in 2005. "Then I was willing to move... and then happened to find myself in the right place at the right time," he says.

So too, Manifold has risen through CRH roles to finally get to the hot seat.

Ryanair plane ads to take off

Michael O'Leary's Ryanair tries to make money from everything. Now it wants to earn more by selling advertising – on the outside of its aircraft.

The starting price? A mere €20,000.

The airline is offering companies the chance to plaster ads on the rear and front of the fuselages across its 300-plus fleet, and also on the winglets at the end of wings.

That €20,000 is for adverts on the inner and outer winglets of two wings on an aircraft and would be for a 12-month period.

A spokesman told The Punt that the airline has a "range of packages tailored to different companies" and that demand "has been huge" since the space availability was announced.

Ryanair will retain its well-known harp logo on aircraft tailfins.

It won't be the first time that Ryanair has carried adverts on its aircraft, however. It previously repainted aircraft to carry ads for brands such as Guinness and Jaguar, while even prior to that it had an aircraft entirely emblazoned with advertising for Eircell.

Research pays dividends as Campbell heads up tech office

THE STATE'S efforts to capitalise on the fruits of our finest researchers have taken a step forward, with the appointment of Dr Alison Campbell as director of technology transfer.

Ms Campbell will lead the new central Technology Transfer Office, which will co-ordinate the efforts of smaller operations within the country's universities. They are tasked with finding the commercial value in the ideas and research churned out by Ireland's third-level institutions.

The Punt very much approves. Publicly funded research enjoys €800m worth of funding from the Government every year, so failing to capitalise on this would be shameful. And early results from the individual transfer offices look very promising.

University College Cork researchers applied for 23 patents and saw the founding of three spin-off companies in 2011 alone.

Irish Independent

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