INM chief executive Vincent Crowley is stepping down as head of Independent News & Media.
Mr Crowley, who has worked for INM since 1990, announced his departure on Thursday evening but will stay on until late May unless a successor is chosen earlier.
The chartered accountant has been chief executive since April 2012 when he replaced Gavin O’Reilly.
Mr Crowley’s two years as chief executive have been among the most momentous in the company’s history as he successfully battled to hammer together a deal to slash the publisher’s debts.
The cost-cutting measures, which included a deal with unions over pension, pay cuts and debt write-downs, have placed INM on a secure footing. Shares in the company were the best performing on the Irish stock exchange over the past year.
“My focus as CEO of INM over the past two years has been to restore financial stability and to restructure and reposition the company for growth across multiple platforms,” Mr Crowley said tonight.
“I believe INM is now well positioned for an island of Ireland recovery. I am grateful to the many stakeholders who supported INM’s transformation and to my very many friends and colleagues for their support since I joined INM in 1990.”
INM chairman Leslie Buckley praised Mr Crowley: “On behalf of the board and shareholders of INM I wish to thank Vincent for his leadership and support and to acknowledge the very substantial progress made by INM under his stewardship.
“In particular, we are grateful to Vincent for completing INM’s balance sheet restructuring and for agreeing to facilitate a seamless transition to his successor, by remaining in his existing role during the process for the appointment of a new CEO.”
INM will now appoint an external advisor to begin the hunt for a new chief executive.