Kingspan executives lose over €3m in bonuses after Grenfell inquiry

Cavan-based company’s 2020 results show it did not pay executives’ cash bonuses

Fallout from an inquiry into the fatal fire at Grenfell Tower in London cost Kingspan executives more than €3 million in bonuses last year, according to the insulation maker's annual report.

Revelations at the Grenfell Tower inquiry in Britain that Kingspan UK used flawed test results to market one of its products and that former staff in the unit joked about fire safety have damaged the Irish manufacturer’s reputation.

The Cavan-based group’s annual report, published on Tuesday, shows that it did not pay executives’ cash bonuses or make deferred share awards last year, cutting their total pay by 22 per cent to €10.3 million from €13.3 million in 2019.

The report states that Kingspan’s remuneration committee “determined that no payouts would be made in respect of the 2020 annual performance bonus to any of the directors”.


The committee, chaired by independent director Linda Hickey, made this decision after evaluating Kingspan's overall performance and matters arising from the inquiry into the 2017 tragedy.

Chief executive Gene Murtagh’s total pay fell 20 per cent to €3.19 million last year from €3.97 million in 2019 as a result of the lost bonus, the figures show.

His fixed pay, including salary and pension contributions, rose slightly to €1.08 million from €1.06 million. Mr Murtagh’s performance pay came to €2.1 million under the group’s long-term incentive plan, which awards executives share options over time. Mr Murtagh’s overall performance pay was €2.9 million in 2019.

Kingspan apology

The Irish group supplied none of the material blamed for the Grenfell fire in which 72 people died. A small quantity of its K15 insulation product was used on the tower without Kingspan’s knowledge when the structure was refitted.

Kingspan has apologised for what it admitted were unacceptable historical shortcomings in its UK insulation boards business and said it had taken steps to ensure this does not happen again.

“In addition, some former employee communications displayed a culture which is not reflective of the greater ethos of the group and which are completely unacceptable,” its report states.

Chief financial officer Geoff Doherty's total pay was cut to €1.94 million last year from €2.5 million in 2019. Russell Shiels, president of its North American insulated panels business, had his total package reduced to €1.7 million from €2.4 million.

Peter Wilson’s pay fell to €944,000 from €1.57 million, while Gilbert McCarthy received €1.1 million last year, down from €1.56 million in 2019.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas