Business leaders are honoured for services to the economy

Brian McConville
Gary McDonald Business Editor

A NEWRY man who turned his modest joinery firm into a multi-million pound business empire is among a number of leading business figures recognised in the new year honours list.

Brian McConville (59), owner and chairman of the MJM Group, has been awarded a CBE for services to the economy and to charity.

He started his joinery business in 1983 to provide refurbishment services to the Irish Sea ferry corridor.

In 2009 the company started working in new custom-built facilities in Newry and in 2013 officially opened its 100,000 sq ft manufacturing facility and office accommodation at Carnbane business park in Newry.

MJM has grown to be one of the world's leading marine outfitting businesses, and in 2018 it fitted-out the Azamara Pursuit for Royal Caribbean at Harland & Wolff, the largest project of its kind in Belfast for decades.

In 2014 Brian acquired the assets leading specialist joinery business Mivan, and this strategic acquisition expanded his remit into land based fit out operations as well as additional marine outfitting.

He also purchased Topglass in Toomebridge in 2018. It had been a specialist glass supplier to MJM and Mivan for many years and was seen as a natural fit for the growing portfolio.

Married to Connie and with four children (three of whom are currently working in MJM Group), he has also built up an extensive property portfolio.

Two years ago Brian organised a charity cruise on board the Azamara Pursuit which raised £160,000 for local causes.

Also awarded a CBE for services to the economy is Paul Terrington, currently head of consulting at PwC UK and EMEA.

In June this year he stood down as regional leader for PwC after nine years in the post.

Under his tenure, PwC NI grew from delivering £60m in revenues to more than £170m. With a workforce of almost 2,300, the Belfast office is the firm’s largest outside London and is preparing to move into a new £70m HQ in Belfast city centre in the new year.

Among the other business recipients, hotels entrepreneur Lord Diljit Rana has had his previously-awarded MBE upgraded to an OBE, again for services to business and the economy.

An MBE has gone to Philip Cassidy, global executive vice president at Concentrix, for services to entrepreneurship, business and the economy.

He founded the Global Email Company (gem) in 2000, and grew the company over a period of 11 years until its acquisition by Concentrix, which now has more than 3,000 employees delivering business process outsourcing services to large blue chip clients.

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