Managing Director, CEO, Manager, Golf, Gym, Ballroom Dancing
My experience is obviously a mix of operational and commercial but having said that, it has involved the plethora of people management skills that are basically necessary to survive in life. I am efficient, affable and erudite (without being bookish). I have the required gravitas when necessary but prefer the informal approach. I am also capable of making hard decisions. I lead by example and people follow.
At the moment I am doing a feasibility study on establishing a glass plant in Ireland, hopefully on the site in Ringsend, possibly with Czech government backing. It’s interesting…if you like walking on wet concrete with the Irish Development Authority, Enterprise Ireland, Czechinvest etc…I’ve spent some time in the Czech Republic in this regard.
Thing is, I’d like a new challenge. Financial gain is not top of my agenda and I wouldn’t want it to be a sticking point. I am a serious but funny man, used to dealing with people at the highest level both in commercial life and government and just as at home with the guy on the shop floor. I don’t have airs or graces, I’m not hung up or interested in titles…I’ve had them…for what they are worth. I know I could bring additional aspects to any operation, aspects which possibly haven’t considered. Relocation would not be an issue.
My CV speaks for itself. I hope to hear from you soon.
Blinds by Suzanne Robertson
From May 2006
On leaving Balcas, Suzanne my then partner and I decided to expand her part-time interior design business. Within 2 years we had a turnover of £250,000 with a 60% margin. I am now based in Dublin with no connection to the company. I currently operate as a consultant and am involved in a feasibility study on setting up a glass plant in Dublin.
February 2004 - May 2006
Annual turnover was €9 million with 85% of sales being in the UK. The feeling of the board was that the company was stagnating and needed a fresh and more commercial managing director. Basically, to turn the company around, or shut it down. During my appointment I achieved the following:
• Increased turnover from €9 million to €11 million
• Increased profitability from €300,000 to €1.2 million
• Approached all major customers personally with a view to successfully increasing prices - taking the line "we are a business not a hobby"
• Stabilised the IR situation to the extent we had a very benign relationship with the union
• Staunchly refused to accept price increases from suppliers and negotiated reductions in several instances
• Secured badly needed investment in plant and machinery
• Heavily involved in planning expansion / increasing capacity, preferably by acquisition but possibly a new greenfield site in the UK
Sales Marketing Director
June 1998 - February 2004
• Sole responsibility for drawing up both Sales and Production budgets and ensuring targets were met. Average annual turnover 50 million euro. For our size, we were the most profitable glass company in Europe. The 'then value' of the site made its own case and is in the public demesne
• Used to dealing with and making presentations to CEOs, Marketing Directors, Procurement Directors - with transnational's such as Diageo, Pernod Ricard, C&C Group, Coca Cola, Nestle, Brown-Forman, E&J Gallo and Constellation Brands
• Pushed aggressively into the UK and Europe to offload excess capacity, both directly with the customer and through agents on high value items
• Despite my Executive Management Team thinking I was overly ambitious when I said we were going to ship glass to E&J Gallo in Modesto, California - the biggest single wine producer in the world - to make it more complicated, it had to be routed through the Panama Canal for quality reasons. I persisted and we produced trial glass. I went to Modesto to oversee the trial run and dealt with all the technical / commercial issues while there, with their team of 12. We went into full production and the glass and service provided exceeded the customers' expectations
• Performed a similar "miracle" for Canandigua Winery, (part of Constellation Brands), in New York State, for their Paul Masson Cream Liqueur. Both projects were handled almost entirely by email from home at night and totalled $6 million with the best margins in the order book
• Shared responsibility for decisions in relation to major capital spends on new machinery, process changes/work processes, staffing levels, IT, etc.
• Total responsibility for credit control
• Total responsibility for the Transport department
• Shared responsibility for outsourcing warehousing
• Irish Delegate for FEVE (Federation Europeenne du Verre D'Emballage / European Glass Manufacturers Federation), which involved attending conventions, lobbying MEPs, making...
March 1988 - June 1998
January 1980 - March 1988
All aspects and senior management decisions
Production Planning Manager
March 1977 - January 1980
Qualifications & Certifications
English & French
University College Dublin