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The 50 Most Influential and Powerful Women in Business

The Irish Independent

To review the original article click here 1st May 2014

Who are the top women deal-makers, game-changers and all-round world beaters in the Irish business world? Compiled by Roisin Burke, Monica Heck, Emily Maree, Nick Webb and Angharad Williams

The inaugural Sunday Independent 50 most powerful and influential business women in Ireland list provides a snapshot of the game-changing executives at the helm of some of the country's most innovative, fast-moving and profitable companies.

While recruiter Anne Heraty was, for more than a decade, the only woman chief executive of a stock market company, she has been joined by Siobhan Talbot, who now runs Ireland's biggest food company Glanbia. The numbers of women at the top tiers of business are still at medieval levels. Ireland lags the rest of Europe when it comes to women in business, with a mere 30 per cent of directorships held by women.

Those on our list dominate sectors ranging from technology and retail to pharma and banking. There are, however, significant gaps, in heavy industry, construction and manufacturing. Women are more likely to be at the top of multinational companies than indigenous Irish enterprises. The inaugural Sunday Independent Most Powerful women in Business list should be much, much longer. Things are changing in boardrooms . . . but not fast enough.

46. Rosaleen Blair

CEO Alexander Mann recruitment

Blair started and runs the most valuable company ever led by an Irish woman. Her Alexander Mann Solutions recruitment services business boasts some of the biggest companies in the world as clients and is worth over €300m.

She skipped going to college and instead started out as a Montessori teacher, worked in retail for a bit and had set her own recruitment agency – all while she was still in her 20s. Her career really took off when she relocated to London and spotted a gap in the market that turned into multimillion pound global talent services business, with Statoil, Credit Suisse and other blue-chip clients.

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