Shopping centre owner Hammerson has announced that its CEO, David Atkins, has decided to step down from his role.
Atkins will remain in position until spring 2021 at the latest, while the board searches for his successor.
Atkins joined the company in 1998 and was appointed as CEO in 2009. He is also a non-executive director at Whitbread.
His career at Hammerson began with responsibility for strategy and investment performance, working on a number of overseas transactions, particularly in France. In 2002 he took responsibility for the UK retail parks portfolio and, in 2006, for the wider UK retail portfolio.
He said: “It has been a privilege to have led Hammerson for over 10 years and I am proud of the many achievements and the incredible colleagues I have worked with.
“The current environment, exacerbated by the impact of Covid-19, is undoubtedly the most challenging we have faced as a business. I feel now is the right time to search for a new chief executive, a person who can not only lead the business as we emerge from this period, but also into its next chapter”.
David Tyler, chairman, added: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank David for his enormous commitment in leading Hammerson during the past decade. He has led the Company with ambition, passion and integrity, creating a culture that will live far beyond his time.
“He has developed Hammerson significantly through the growth of our premium outlets business, the geographical diversification of our portfolio, our market-leading sustainability framework and the establishment of our City Quarters strategy.”
He concluded: “I look forward to continuing to work closely with him until a successor is appointed.”