Brendan McGuinness, the MD of C&C's embattled cider division, is to retire next May after almost 40 years with the company.

McGuinness joined C&C, the maker of Magners, as marketing managing in 1971 and was appointed to his current position five years later. He is currently overseeing a restructuring of the company following a slump in its UK sales this year.

The restructuring plan, to be announced this month, is expected to involve a significant number of redundancies among the 600 staff at the plant in Clonmel, County Tipperary.

Company profit for the first six months of the year fell 39% to €57m.