As INM’s agm kicks off, Denis O’Brien feels the heat (of the sun)
It appears O’Brien was relaxing in Spain as an extraordinary INM scene played out
Jade Jagger’s Instagram post, along with Bruce Springsteen and Noel Gallagher. But is that other diner a chilled-out Denis O’Brien?
The Independent News & Media (INM) agm was the main focus of the corporate week, and the continuing stand-off between Robert Pitt, the chief executive, and Leslie Buckley, the chairman, was the main focus of the agm.
It was expected that Pitt would choose not to back his chairman’s re-election to the board, and he met those expectations, a deliberate slapdown of Buckley. It was interesting to note the only two remaining independent directors on the INM board, however, did not throw Pitt a line.
Both Les O’Hagan and Terry Buckley voted for Leslie Buckley’s re-election, which was a de-facto vote of confidence in the chairman from both of them.
All the other directors also voted for Buckley, with the exception of Paul Connolly, who was abroad and so was unable to attend.
There was no sign at the proceedings of INM’s main shareholder, Denis O’Brien, whom Buckley represents on the board, although one of the billionaire’s closest advisers was spotted floating around the room.
O’Brien, it appears, was instead relaxing this week in Spain.
In the background of the picture, a familiar-looking face sits at another table having a meal. It looks exactly like a chilled-out O’Brien.
Jagger is on holidays on Formentera, an island just south of Ibiza. She posted the picture from the high-end Playa de ses Illetes part of the island, where there is only one decent beachside eatery: Restaurante Juan y Andrea.
It appears from a comparison of pictures that this is indeed the restaurant where she met Gallagher and Springsteen, and where O’Brien (or his doppleganger) was enjoying himself in the background.
The menu online has no prices, a sure sign it is an exclusive establishment, the sort of place where the rich hang out.
So was the background diner in Restaurante Juan y Andrea INM’s main shareholder? Well, he owns the enormous €80 million vintage-style yacht Nero. Marine traffic data shows Nero has been anchored this week in the harbour at Tarragona, on the east coast of the Spanish mainland.
Wherever O’Brien was this week, it was surely warm. Let’s see if the heat also gets turned up at INM in coming months over its corporate governance row.