Gibney hands over to deputy
AFTER 17 YEARS at the helm, Ita Gibney has decided to hand over the day-to-day running of her public relations agency Gibney Communications to deputy chief executive Donnchadh O’Neill.
Gibney has taken on the role of executive chairman with O’Neill becoming chief executive.
“I’m not hanging up my boots and I’ll still be involved on key client accounts and in the strategy for the firm,” Gibney told me this week.
She said business was “holding up” with turnover this year expected to come in at “just under” €2 million. This would represent a 3 per cent increase on 2011, Gibney added.
Gibney founded the agency in 1995 after cutting her teeth with first Murray Consultants and then as director of corporate communications with Greencore.
The agency has a strong roster of clients, including German discounter Aldi, Dublin Port and accountants Deloitte. It has 15 staff, and Gibney noted there had been no redundancies in the downturn.
O’Neill, who also previously worked for Murrays as well as at RTÉ, is set to become a shareholder in the business “over time”, according to Gibney.
O’Neill is keen to drive the business forward and said the board would meet shortly to review the firm’s strategy.
“I wouldn’t rule out growth by acquisition,” he said. “There’s consolidation to come in the sector.
“ In the immediate term, I’m looking to hire a couple of seasoned account executives.”