Telecoms group Siro appoints new chief executive

ESB-Vodafone joint venture appoints John Keaney as its new chief executive

ESB-Vodafone joint venture Siro has appointed a new chief executive. The telco, which is supplying broadband services in more than 30 regional towns and cities, said its chief financial officer John Keaney would be taking over from current chief executive Sean Atkinson.

The switch is part of an agreement between the ESB and Vodafone, whereby one person from each company assumes the role of chief executive every four years.

Following his stint at Siro, Mr Atkinson is returning to the ESB to take up a new role as head of ESB International.

Prior to his position in Siro, Mr Keaney was with Vodafone for 10 years where he served in a variety of roles including head of financial operations and financial controller.


Siro's new chief financial officer is to be Michelle Mullally, currently the ESB's group internal auditor.

Mr Keaney said Siro’s network had now passed 200,000 homes and was “already having a positive impact on the lives of people in the 30 towns where our services are live.”

The announcement comes as the Government awaits an auditor’s report on the National Broadband Plan procurement processs, which has been halted following the controversy about former minister for communications Denis Naughten’s meetings with the lead bidder.

Independent auditor Peter Smyth is currently assessing whether Mr Naughten's contacts with David McCourt, chairman and founder of US investment firm Granahan McCourt, have compromised the tender.

Siro, formerly one of the favourites to win the State-subsidised contract, dropped out of the process last year, suggesting there was no longer a “business case” for its continued participation.

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy is Economics Correspondent of The Irish Times