GFG Alliance ends transformative year with appointment of new COO

Media release > 19th December, 2019

Global industrial group GFG Alliance has appointed Neil Barrell as its first Group Chief Operating Officer (COO) following a year of expansion and transformation across its businesses.

Neil will take up the new role on 1 January 2020 from within the organisation, after joining GFG Alliance as the global head of integration and performance earlier this year.

Initially, Neil’s focus will be on bringing GFG Alliance’s Liberty Steel businesses across the globe into one consolidated Liberty Steel Group, which was launched by Sanjeev Gupta at the World Steel Dynamics conference in October. As part of this consolidation, GFG is committed to enhancing governance across its worldwide organisation, and to move towards broader financial transparency.

Neil will also have responsibility for business transformation and integration, operational improvement, asset performance, business intervention and restructuring across the wider GFG Alliance.

“The creation of a global COO role allows a sharper focus across the group on operational improvements and formalises the work Neil and his team are already leading on integration and performance,” Executive Chairman Sanjeev Gupta said.

“I’m delighted to be taking on this new role following an exciting year of transformation across the global group of businesses,” Neil Barrell said.

“Working towards the consolidation of Liberty Steel Group and ensuring we are making strides to reach our 2030 target of being carbon neutral will be among my initial priorities as I take up the role.”

Neil, 49, has many years’ senior management experience – including nine years at senior management level – leading businesses in steel, aluminium and the automotive sector. He joined GFG Alliance in June from international accounting and consultancy firm Grant Thornton, where he was a senior partner as head of UK manufacturing and industrials, and the firm’s global automotive leader.

At Grant Thornton, Neil led strategic reviews, acquisitions and optimisations for a variety of Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 companies, UK Government and private equity clients.


Henry Evans – Media Relations, GFG Alliance
+44 7540 249364

Tom Hufton – FTI Consulting
+44 7999 653523

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