Mark Davies is to step down from his position as NewRiver’s chief financial officer (CFO), and the company’s board, with immediate effect following the announcement earlier this week that NewRiver has reached an agreement to sell its pub business Hawthorn to Admiral Taverns.

Davis will remain in his position as chief executive officer of Hawthorn.

He commented: “I have enjoyed the last 12 years at NewRiver where we took an IPO start-up Company to a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange. It has been rewarding and challenging to create a retail REIT with £1 billion of assets and Hawthorn as a market leading pub company, with entrepreneurial spirit, a people-first culture and a focus on community.

“My time at NewRiver has been unique and rewarding, building two great businesses and leading so many talented people whose commitment, hard work, friendship and loyalty is something for which I will always be grateful.”

Allan Lockhart, chief executive officer, commented: “Mark has made an enormous contribution in helping to grow NewRiver to what it is today, having been with us every step of the way since we first floated on AIM in 2009 with seed capital of just £25 million.

“He has played a pivotal role in helping to shape our strategy and giving NewRiver the financial foundations to successfully pursue it.

Lockhart said he had also been a driving force and visionary behind NewRiver’s pub strategy, which began with it acquiring its first portfolio of sites (202) from Marston’s in 2013, buying Hawthorn five years later and culminating it in agreed sale for £222.3m.

“On behalf of everyone at NewRiver, we wish Mark the very best for the future and sincerely thank him for everything he has done for the business,” said Lockhart.

Will Hobman, currently NewRiver’s finance director has been promoted to the CFO role and will join the board on completion of the disposal of Hawthorn, which is expected to take place on 20 August 2021.