LONDON (AP) — Arsenal chief executive Vinai Venkatesham will leave the club next summer, the Gunners said Thursday.
Venkatesham has been with the Premier League team for 14 years in different roles.
“This was a tough decision, but it is time to pursue another challenge,” he said in the team’s announcement.
Venkatesham has held numerous positions at Arsenal including managing director and chief commercial officer. He became chief executive in 2020.
He has overseen the club’s return to the Champions League for the first time in six years after finishing runner-up to Manchester City in England’s top division last season.
It has been 19 years since Arsenal last won the Premier League, but it has emerged as the leading challenger to City under manager Mikel Arteta.
“There is positivity around the club because we feel we are heading in the right direction, but we’ve got a long way to go to achieve what we want to achieve,” Venkatesham told The Associated Press in January. “We are at the start of that journey.”
Arsenal co-chair Josh Kroenke said “change and succession is something the club is well prepared for,” but the team didn’t name a replacement.
“The Board is fully supportive of Vinai’s desire to pursue his next challenge,” Kroenke said. “Whilst it is business as usual with everyone focused on the season ahead, we’d like to take this moment to thank him for his contribution and long service.”