Thursday 20 September 2018

Iarnród Éireann chief executive leaving the company for job in Australia

Irish Rail chief executive David Franks
Irish Rail chief executive David Franks
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

Iarnród Éireann chief executive David Franks is leaving the company to take up a senior position in the Australian public transport sector.

He will leave his post in the coming months as the state-owned railway company faces the threat of industrial action from staff after train drivers overwhelmingly rejected a 1.15pc pay rise to compensate for past productivity and which would also have obliged them to take part in training and mentoring of new staff.

Mr Franks was appointed in February 2013, and the company said he had led the organisation through “one of its most challenging financial eras”.

Chairman Frank Allen said: “I want to thank David for his immense contribution to Iarnród Éireann over the past five years.

“David has led Iarnród Éireann at a very challenging time for the company and has delivered significant improvements in safety, passenger growth of 24pc, and new customer-focused systems and processes. These changes will benefit the company for many years to come.

“The Iarnród Éireann board will commence the process of recruiting a new chief executive shortly, but I know David will remain fully committed to addressing the challenges the company faces in his remaining time with us.”

Passenger numbers are back to boom-time levels in the railway company, but the loss-making company remains in a precarious financial position.

It has accumulated losses running to more than €150m and has warned it risks going out of business unless its finances improve.

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