UBM was today under pressure to speed up its search for a new chief executive as it emerged that David Levin was leaving in March, earlier than planned, to run McGraw-Hill Education in America.
Levin announced last September that he intended to step down by July 2014 as he was seeking a fresh “challenge” after heading the FTSE 250 business information and events group for eight years.
UBM said chairman Dame Helen Alexander, former chief executive of The Economist Group, will “become executive chairman until a new CEO is in place”.
But Liberum Capital said UBM’s willingness to let Levin go was a positive. “We think this suggests a new CEO appointment is probably close,” added the broker.
UBM shares today rose 12p, or almost 2 per cent, to 695p.