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Virgin Media Boss Makes Shock Exit
By: MarkJ - 22 August, 2007 (9:10 AM)

Steve Burch, the chief executive of UK cable giant Virgin Media, has surprised everybody with his resignation for "family and personal reasons".

Burch will leave immediately and is also stepping down from his role on Virgin's board:

Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq:VMED) today announced that, for family and personal reasons, Steve Burch, Virgin Media's CEO, has decided to return to the United States and leave the company with immediate effect. He will also step down from Virgin Media's Board.

A search for Steve's replacement will begin shortly. In the meantime, Neil Berkett, Virgin Media's COO, will assume the role of Acting CEO with responsibility for driving forward the company's strategy and operational development.

Since joining Virgin Media in January 2006, Steve has led the Company through the merger and subsequent integration of ntl and Telewest, the acquisition of Virgin Mobile and the successful re-branding of the company's residential operations under the Virgin brand.

Commenting on Steve's decision, Virgin Media's Chairman, Jim Mooney, said: "Steve has contributed significantly to the transformation of Virgin Media. Since he joined us, the company has emerged as the UK's only 'quad play' provider and a genuinely distinctive presence in the world of communications and entertainment. On behalf of Virgin Media's Board of Directors, I thank him for his contribution to our development and wish him every success for the future."

Virgin has been under a lot of pressure from investors, most recently placing the business into a private equity sell-out, which has been delayed following market turmoil.

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