Trinity chairman Sir Ian Gibson to stand down early

Trinity Mirror‘s chairman will leave the company months ahead of schedule, the company announced this morning.

Last December Trinity announced Sir Ian Gibson would leave on 3 August, but a statement issued this morning confirmed he will leave the company on Tuesday 29 May.

Trinity said he was standing down as chairman and resigning as a director ‘in order to enable a smooth transition ahead of the company’s interim results announcement on 2 August”.

He will be replaced by David Grigson, who said: ‘The board thanks Sir Ian for his leadership over the last six years and I look forward to working more closely with the team.”

Gibson added: ‘I have enjoyed working with the Trinity Mirror team and can see that with David Grisgon as chairman, they will continue to develop their strategy of maximising the benefits of a strong print portfolio while building a good range of digital businesses.”

Gibson’s departure comes in the same month that chief executive Sly Bailey announced she was leaving the company at the end of the year.

He came under fire from shareholders at the company’s recent AGM when he attempted to defend Bailey’s pay package and her running of the company over the last 10 years, arguing that she had ‘consistently delivered robust profits and cashflows”.

In total, Bailey was paid £1.3m in cash, shares and pension contributions in 2011, down from £1.7m in 2010.

Grigson, who has been a non-executive director of the company since 1 January 2012, is leading the process to find her replacement.

He is a formerly chief financial officer of Reuters and of Emap plc.

Trinity Mirror is the UK’s biggest regional newspaper publisher and also owns the Mirror national titles, the Daily Record and the Sunday Mail.

Earlier this year it reported a 40 per cent fall in operating profit to £92.4m on revenue down 2 per cent to £747m in the 2011 financial year.

Its nationals division saw revenue fall 1.7 per cent to £453m and operating profit drop 12 per cent to £83.1m, while operating profit at its regional press division fell 16 per cent to £36.5m on revenue down 2.3 per cent to £293.6m.

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