UBM’s CEO David Levin will step down from the company by 31 July 2014.
Chairman Helen Alexander will lead a search for the replacement of Levin who will remain in the role until a successor is found.
Levin has been CEO since 2005, during which time he helped transform UBM from a broad media conglomerate focused on the UK and US into an events and communications business in emerging markets. When he succeeded Lord Hollick in 2005, UBM employed 6,500 staff. There are around 5,500 now, but fewer than 2,000 of those Levin inherited, remain.
“David has led the remarkable transformation of UBM into a focused, international events-led marketing communications business during a time of huge change in the media industry,” said Alexander.
“He has successfully laid the foundations for UBM’s next phase of development. David remains in charge and we are working closely together to ensure a good handover when the time comes.”
Levin said during his time as CEO the company has completed more than 100 acquisitions, more than a dozen disposals and returned more than £900m of cash to shareholders.
He added that UBM’s two main businesses, Events and PR Newswire, offer significant opportunities for growth, both organic and by acquisition.
“UBM has built its businesses in the emerging markets of China, India, Brazil, Turkey and the ASEAN [Association of Southeast Asian Nations] region while strengthening its largest position in the US,” said Levin. UBM’s largest operations base is now in Shanghai.
“I feel that it is the right time to look for my next challenge. I look forward to the future and, in the meantime, it is business as usual.”
During Levin’s time in charge print titles such as Exchange and Mart and Music Week were cast aside.
Group earnings from events doubled to 70 per cent in eight years.
He will leave the company with a market value of close on £1.7bn.
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