Aidan Greene to succeed Alan Cox as Core chief executive

Deputy CEO takes top job in marketing group as Cox leaves to set up software company

Core’s incoming chief executive Aidan Greene (left) with Alan Cox, who is stepping down as boss of the marketing group. Photograph: Conor McCabe

Core’s incoming chief executive Aidan Greene (left) with Alan Cox, who is stepping down as boss of the marketing group. Photograph: Conor McCabe

 

Aidan Greene will become chief executive of Irish marketing communications group Core from April, succeeding Alan Cox, the company announced to employees on Tuesday.

Mr Greene, the deputy chief executive of Core since 2014, has been appointed to the top role under a planned succession strategy following Mr Cox’s decision to leave the position after 15 years to launch a software company specialising in business transformation.

Core, which is the largest marketing communications company in Ireland, has expanded into a multiservice agency in recent years. It now operates a creative practice alongside its longer-standing media planning and buying activities, creating campaigns for clients such as Fáilte Ireland, Energia and KFC.

The business, which employs 330 people, also comprises data, investment, learning, research, sponsorship and strategy practices, while it owns the media agencies Mediaworks, Spark Foundry, Starcom and Zenith.

Mr Greene (51), whose appointment will be effective from April 4th, was previously managing director of MediaVest (now Spark Foundry). Before taking the reins at MediaVest in 2007, he launched the direct response marketing agency Clear Blue Water, while he has also worked for Ogilvy & Mather and Carat.

He currently chairs the board of the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival, while he has served a two-year term as president of the Institute of Advertising Practitioners of Ireland and lectured in the Dublin Institute of Technology and the Fitzwilliam Institute.

Core, which counts the HSE, the National Lottery and insurer Aviva among its clients, saw billings rebound strongly in 2021, having dropped just 4.6 per cent in 2020 to €202.4 million as the onset of Covid-19 prompted a global pause in spending by advertisers.

“We’re seeing that client demand for our services has increased,” said Mr Greene, who paid tribute to Mr Cox for his expertise and friendship over the years. “His understanding of the ever-changing media industry landscape and his passion for learning and development to meet the needs of our clients and team is something I will continue.”

Shareholding

Mr Greene is among the members of Core’s senior management team with a shareholding in the Irish-owned company, as is Mr Cox who will retain his stake.

The outgoing chief executive said he had “immensely” enjoyed his time leading the group.

“It has been a great privilege to work with so many wonderful people within the organisation itself and across the clients, media owners and other partners who I have collaborated with over the last 15 years,” he said.

Core is chaired by Patrick Coveney, the chief executive of UK contract foodservice company SSP Group and former Greencore boss.