The outgoing chief executive of Kerry Group is taking up a new role at Ryanair.
Stan McCarthy, who has been the boss of the Tralee-based Kerry Group for the past 10 years, will join the Irish airline's board as a non-executive director. He will stand down as chief executive of Kerry Group at the end of September.
Ryanair chairman David Bonderman said:
We are all pleased to welcome Stan McCarthy to the board of Ryanair. Given Stan’s outstanding record as chief executive of Kerry Group he will, I believe, be a significant and valuable addition to our board.
I expect Stan to join the board at the end of May, and he will put himself forward for approval by shareholders at our Sept AGM.
I very much look forward to working with Stan to continue to grow Ryanair safely and profitably in the best interests of our customers, our people, and our shareholders.
Ryanair also announced today that it had launched a new innovation hub in Madrid, its third after opening in Dublin and Wroclaw in Poland, and the creation of 250 new jobs.
It comes after news that seven European pension funds overseeing nearly €300bn of assets had pulled their investments in Ryanair over concerns regarding labour disputes involving the airline.
The Financial Times reported that Denmark's largest pension fund, ATP, and Swedish retirement scheme Folksam, were among those that had sold holdings in Ryanair.
It said the airline's chief executive Michael O'Leary called the funds "misinformed" and said the airline does not have labour issues.
Ryanair became Europe's biggest airline by passenger numbers in January, knocking Lufthansa off the top spot, though it has come under scrutiny over labour issues in the past. French authorities fined it nine million euros in 2013 for breaking labour laws in Marseille.
Danish trade unions brought the Irish low-cost carrier to court in 2015, which ruled Ryanair needed to sign a collective agreement with local staff or risk a blockade from trade unionists.