Australian scientist takes top IRL job

An Australian agricultural scientist is the new chief executive of Industrial Research Ltd, the Government's science company .

Shaun Coffey has been at Australia's CSIRO, the Federal Government's science company, for the past 12 years and has headed its second-largest division, Livestock Industries, for six years.

He will replace Nigel Kirkpatrick, a former Unilever executive who left a high-paying job in Switzerland to head IRL in June 2002. Kirkpatrick resigned last December after three years of financial deficits.

Coffey will pick up the reins at IRL on July 31 - 13 months after IRL notched up a $5.37 million deficit for the year to June 2005, on an operating revenue of $60.1 million.

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