Profits up 54% at consultants who probed bank pay

Pre-tax profits at the consultancy firm that carried out a report into the pay at Irish banks last year increased by 54% to €9.57m.

New accounts filed by Mercer Ireland Holdings Ltd show that the group recorded the large jump in pre-tax profits as revenues increased by 12% going from €102.23m to €114.56m in the 12 months to the end of December last.

A small portion of the firm’s revenues arose from the report it carried out into pay at banks subject to the Government’s bail-out.

The Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan has confirmed that Mercer (Ireland) Ltd received €146,370 concerning its review on the remuneration practices and frameworks at the financial institutions that was published last year.

Numbers employed at the US-owned Mercer last year increased from 477 to 481 and the cost of wages and salaries totalled €40.38m.

Mercer had 54 employed in management and 427 in administration and professional staff with the average pay totalling €83,956.

This is €20,000 more than the average pay of employees at the largest bank, AIB, included in the Mercer report where the consultancy firm found average remuneration in 2012 of €60,400.

Pay to Mercer’s five directors, William Simon O’Regan, Paul O’Flaherty, Tom Brennan, Vincent Sheridan and Tom Geraghty who served during 2013 totalled €1.34m, and this represents an 88% increase on the €710,700 payout in 2012.

Two of the five in 2013 each served six months with Mr O’Flaherty resigning on June 30 to be replaced by Mr Geraghty.

The main activities of the group consist of the provision of actuarial, human resource, management consulting advice together with related services and its operates as a fiduciary manager in the European fund management sector.

According to the directors’ report “the group continues to grow revenue by expanding existing and building new service offerings to clients”.

Operating profits at the group increased by 18% going from €5.79m to €9m. Investment income of €530,222 — offset by €52,321 in interest payments — helped increase the firm’s profits to €9.57m.

At the end of last year shareholder funds totalled €41.34m that included cash of €59m. The profit takes account of a combined €2m from non-cash depreciation and amortisation costs.

Mercer has more than 20,500 employees based in more than 40 countries.


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