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2011 Dr. John Teeling



Dr. John Teeling is a leading Irish entrepreneur and is best known as the Founder and Chairman of Cooley Distillery. He is a leading pioneer of Irish industry, holding stakes in a number of industrial ventures, as well as being the founder of the only independent Irish whiskey distillers, Cooley Distillery.

John established Cooley Distillery in 1987, with a clear vision to restore some of the ancient brands of Irish whiskey and to create more choice for consumers through innovation and the revival of old distilling techniques. Cooley was the first new whiskey distillery to be established in Ireland in over 100 years, ending a monopoly in the production of Irish whiskey and bringing much needed competition into the industry. Cooley’s whiskeys are now sold in 45 countries and exports are continuing to expand, particularly in the US, where there is a strong revival in consumption of Irish whiskey. Following the sale of Irish Distillers (owners of Jameson, Paddy and Powers) to the French multi-national firm Pernod Ricard, and the subsequent sale of Bushmills to the UK multi-national Diageo, Cooley today is the only Irish owned whiskey distillery.

John is also a veteran in the natural resources sector, dealing in gems, mineral and oil exploration. He has established numerous companies in the sector, several of which are quoted on the London Stock Exchange. He is the founder and chairman of Petrel Resources, Minco, African Gold, Persian Gold and West African Diamonds all listed in London. He is also the founder and a former director of Kenmare Resources and a former director of Arcon. West African Diamonds.

John was an academic for 20 years as a lecturer in Business Administration at UCD. He holds degrees from UCD (B. Comm, M. Econ. Sc), Wharton Business School (MBA), and a doctorate from Harvard Business School.

Dr John Teeling has been a sustained entrepreneur who has contributed directly to Irish business and to education of future entrepreneurs in his time as a researcher and educator.

For his entrepreneurial spirit, for his contribution to Industry in Ireland, and for his success in diverse businesses which have brought credit to Ireland, the Irish Academy of Management believes that John Teeling fully demonstrates the personal and professional qualities that are honoured by the Whitaker Award.

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