Larry Goodman announces ‘strategic’ changes to board of ABP Food Group

A number of high-profile appointments and retirements have been announced to the board of the Larry Goodman owned ABP Food Group – one of Europe’s leading privately-owned food processors.

Five new directors have been appointed – including Mark Goodman, the youngest son of the lucrative business empire; while four members are to depart the board – including Laurence P. Goodman, the eldest son of the meat industry tycoon, who has been substantially involved in the property development portfolio over the years.

In another significant move, the group has also announced that former Glanbia boss, John Moloney, will join as the board’s new director and chairman designate.

Founder Larry Goodman – now 83 years-of-age – will remain as executive chairman of ABP Food Group; however, there is some suggestion that these latest board adjustments may indicate further change down the line.

In a statement this morning, Friday, February 28, the group acknowledged “the service, direction and leadership” given by its outgoing board members, namely: Ron Bolger; John Jackson; Philip Morgan; and Laurence Goodman (jnr).

Moloney and company

Businessman John Moloney – the former group managing director (MD) of Glanbia plc – has had significant experience over a 33-year career in the food and agri-business sector.

He is currently a non-executive director of DCC plc (an international sales, marketing and support services group), where he is chairman, and of Smurfit Kappa Group plc.

The Dungarvan, Co. Waterford resident has also served – up to January of this year – a seven-year term as a non-executive director of Greencore plc.

During his tenure as MD at Glanbia plc (2001 to 2013), Moloney held a number of senior management positions including: chief executive of Glanbia Ingredients Ireland; and Glanbia Agribusiness. Earlier in his career, he worked in the meat industry and in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Tom Kirwan joins the board having stepped down from his position as MD of ABP UK last October.

Kirwan began his career at ABP Cahir almost four decades ago in 1982. In 1990, he moved to ABP UK, where he held a number of senior positions, in Wessex Foods, the Convenience Division and as MD of ABP UK since 2009.

The group has stated that Kirwan “has been instrumental” in the “ongoing development and growth” of ABP UK.

Chartered accountant Fergal O’Dwyer, chief financial officer of DCC plc, joins the board too.

O’Dwyer will step down from his executive role in July 2020 – a position he has held since 1994.

Through his tenure at DCC, O’Dwyer is said to have “gained significant experience” in financial management, treasury, strategic and corporate development and acquisitions. Prior to joining DCC he worked with KPMG and PwC in audit and corporate finance.

Mark Goodman

ABP Food Group has also announced the appointment of two further directors to its board – Finbarr McDonnell and Mark Goodman, both executives in the group.

McDonnell joined the group in the 1970s. Through a wide-ranging career McDonnell has worked in the Irish Meat Division in a number of roles including: plant general manager; MD at ABP Ireland and Poland; and since 2017 as group chief operations officer of ABP Food Group.

Mark Goodman joins the board having begun his career with ABP after graduation.

Over 15 years Goodman has worked at various ABP Ireland plants. Since 2011, he has held the role of MD of ABP International – the international trading wing of the group. The group has stated that “Mark has been instrumental in developing ABP’s Asian markets”.

Larry’s strategy

The new appointments will join existing and continuing board members Larry Goodman – who remains in his role as executive chairman – and Frank Stephenson, group chief executive.

Commenting on the announcement, Larry Goodman said:

These new appointments to the board of ABP Food Group will enhance board capacity and capability.

Larry Goodman (snr) continued by saying that the moves “will facilitate the ongoing development and strategic leadership of the business”.