Irish Times announces Business Person Of The Year

10 May 2018

Siobhán Talbot, the Managing Director of Glanbia, is the inaugural winner of The Irish Times Business Person of the Year Award.


Ms. Talbot was one of 11 winners of The Irish Times Business Person of the Month Awards which were launched last May and who was eligible for the overall award.


The purpose of the Awards, which are being run in association with KPMG, is to recognise excellence and outstanding achievement in Irish business.


Ms. Talbot received her award from An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, at a gala ceremony in the Mansion House in Dublin last night attended by more than 300 people.


She was adjudged the overall winner for her efforts in overseeing a deal to spin off Glanbia’s Irish dairy and agribusiness operation into a joint venture called Glanbia Ireland. 


Following the deal, the company’s main shareholder, Glanbia Co-operative Society, became the majority owner of this new entity. This was seen as a major achievement following a previous unsuccessful attempt to sell the business to the co-op in 2010.


Ms. Talbot was appointed MD of Glanbia in November 2013 having previously been Group Finance Director. A fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland, she joined Glanbia in 1992.


Ireland’s largest indigenous company CRH won The Irish Times Company of the Year Award, sponsored by KPMG. Last August the company, led by CEO Albert Manifold, agreed to buy Ash Grove Cement, the US’s fifth-largest building materials company for €3.5bn while moving to sell the company’s low-margin US distribution arm, Allied Building Products for $2.6bn.


All the while, CRH has continued to grow its profits, with analysts predicting it will post an 8% increase in earnings this year.


The Irish Times Top 1,000* Distinguished Leader in Business Award was presented to Mark FitzGerald, Chairman of estate agent Sherry FitzGerald, by Liam Kavanagh, Managing Director of The Irish Times.


Mr. FitzGerald, retired last June after more than 40 years in the business, 35 of them as chief executive. He co-founded Sherry FitzGerald in 1982 and the company sells more than 8,500 houses a year and has a market share of 15%.


Liam Kavanagh paid tribute to the winners, the nominees and the wider business community for their support of the Awards.


“I would like to warmly congratulate Siobhán Talbot on becoming the inaugural winner of The Irish Times Business Person of the Year Award – it’s richly deserved.  I would also like to pay tribute to the calibre, diversity, and record of success of the other award winners as well as the individuals and companies who were nominated in the different categories.”


“I would like to thank KPMG, our partners in this initiative, the Chair of the judging panel Cathriona Hallahan, Managing Director Microsoft Ireland, and her fellow judges, as well as the broader business community for all their support in making these Awards such a success.”


Shaun Murphy, Managing Partner, KPMG in Ireland said the award recipients would act as role models for Irish enterprise.


“One of the most satisfying and enjoyable elements of being an adviser to business in Ireland is seeing first-hand the issues which motivate Irish business leaders and drive them to succeed across a range of companies and sectors. Ireland has so many exceptional business people. These awards celebrate those exceptional people.”


Two other awards were presented on the night. Newry-based sports technology group Statsports Technologies won the Deal of the Year Award for its €1.14 billion deal with the official governing body of soccer in the US. The deal will lead to millions of players using its monitoring devices to aid performance on the pitch.


Mark Bourke from AIB won the Chief Financial Officer of the Year Award. Mr. Bourke was a key player in AIB’s return to stock markets in Dublin and London – the largest IPO in Europe in 2017. This represented the first sale of the bank’s shares since it was taken into State ownership post the crash. 


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Contact Kieran Garry

Gordon MRM



Note to Editor


*The Irish Times Top 1,000, the definitive guide to Ireland’s largest companies, is published today to coincide with The Irish Times Business Awards. It’s also available at

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