What was once a tough gig proves easy for Talbot
THE Glanbia annual general meeting has been a tough gig for its managing director in recent years.
What with the row over the spin-out of the milk business into Glanbia Ingredients Ireland, as well as disagreements over milk prices, the meeting has earned a reputation for skin and hair flying.
Not so yesterday.
It was Siobhan Talbot's first time attending the meeting as managing director but as the former CFO she was plenty familiar with the top table.
Ms Talbot's job is a bit easier now that the pesky milk business has been effectively sold.
Normally there are a few disgruntled investors at every AGM but not this time. The toughest question from the floor was one farmer asking if ordinary shareholders could take part in future fundraising – not exactly a problem.
When another shareholder stood up to tell Ms Talbot "I think you're great" that just about summed up the feeling in the room towards the new MD.
That is not to say everything on Ms Talbot's desk is rosy.
Margins fell in its key US cheese business as milk supplies tightened, while the Irish consumer business continues to be mired in problems.
While outsiders might look at Glanbia'a balance sheet and say the company should cut, close or sell the consumer business and focus on the high-margin US Cheese & Global Nutritionals divisions, Ms Talbot is having none of it. Instead she looks likely to double down on the business. The firm has already cut costs there but now she is looking at acquisitions and growing it overseas. It is an ambitious plan, and one that will be closely watched by the market in the months ahead.