New CEO for BT Ireland

7 Jun 2005 has learned that Scotsman Danny McLaughlin is to be the new chief executive of BT Ireland and Northern Ireland, filling the shoes of Bill Murphy who is take up a new role as head of BT Business in the UK.

BT Ireland chief operations officer (COO) Mike Maloney will continue in his present role but will in effect be country manager for Ireland.

It is understood McLaughlin, who took up his new role as managing director of BT regions and chief executive of BT Ireland last month, will focus mainly on BT’s operations in Ireland, Northern Ireland (NI), Scotland and Wales from a strategic perspective. He also carries the title of president of business development of BT Global Services.

A spokesperson for BT Ireland said McLaughlin will leave the day-to-day operations of BT Ireland in the hands of Maloney. She said: “Danny has looked over the Irish business and has decided the company is on a solid financial footing. His role on a day-to-day basis will be limited. His view is: ‘You guys have a fantastic business, get on with it.'”

McLaughlin is a career BT man, having spent more than 30 years with the company. His early career was in engineering and managing BT’s engineering field force before rising up through various sales management jobs to the position of regional sales manager for Scotland and NI. After heading up BT’s European operations, McLaughlin was appointed head of BT’s corporate clients division, with a workforce of more than 4,000 people and a turnover in excess of £2.5bn sterling.

Prior to taking up his present position, McLaughlin was managing director of BT’s major business unit, responsible for sales, marketing and services to BT’s corporate and government clients.

It was suggested in media reports that COO Maloney was likely to take up the position of chief executive. However, a spokesperson for BT Ireland explained Maloney will for all intents and purposes be country manager in terms of the day to day running of BT’s operations in the State.

Prior to joining BT Ireland, Maloney headed up EuroCommerce, a software-services company providing global-payment processing to multinational merchants. Before heading up EuroCommerce, Maloney worked for Digital Equipment Corporation before heading up computer manufacturer Gateway’s EMEA operations in Dublin.

It is likely Maloney will have his hands full expanding BT Ireland’s business, taking advantage of opportunities in the nascent broadband and converged communications space.

In recent weeks, BT Ireland reported turnover grew 29pc year on year to €372m, compared with €289m for the same period last year. The company said it has reduced losses from €15m more than a year ago to breaking even this year and plans to generate operating profits in the year ahead. The company’s 900 Irish staff each received a bonus of between 8pc and 13pc to reflect the strong results.

By John Kennedy