OÌmahony: Oldcastle’s Builder

Retired CRH Chief Executive Liam O’Mahony exits the Belgard Castle executive suite after making solid marks on both sides of the Atlantic

Sources: CP staff; CRH Plc

Retired CRH Chief Executive Liam OÌMahony exits the Belgard Castle executive suite after making solid marks on both sides of the Atlantic. He began a climb through CRH’s U.S. ranks in 1986 at Callanan Industries. The Albany, N.Y., aggregate, asphalt and ready mixed operator was an anchor business of the Oldcastle Materials Group, more recently designated CRH Americas Materials Division. After his 1994 appointment as Oldcastle Inc. chief executive, OÌMahony presided over an ambitious expansion yielding one of the first U.S. construction materials operators with sales exceeding $1 billion–a watermark that proved to be only the beginning.

He effected an acquisition strategy that avoided bidding wars in favor of negotiated terms, netting Oldcastle strong regional operations in ready mixed concrete, packaged dry mix and companion materials, aggregates and asphalt, plus a national presence in concrete masonry, precast, architectural glass, and building materials distribution. After his six years at the helm, OÌMahony had Oldcastle well on track to emerge with its present top-five market positions in ready mixed, block & paver, (nonarchitectural) precast, packaged concrete, aggregates and asphalt.

Since returning to Dublin in 2000, he has maintained oversight of deals through which CRH created parallel Materials and Products & Distribution businesses under Americas and Europe banners. In his final years as chief executive, OÌMahony was responsible for a global entity with annual sales in the $25 billionÒ$28 billion range. At 62, he continues with CRH as one of nine nonexecutive directors on the board.