Henry Birch, chief executive of the gaming and entertainment giant Rank Group, has resigned from the position he has held since May, 2014.

In a statement released this morning, Rank said: “The Rank Group announces that Henry Birch… has given 12 months’ notice to resign from the business in order to join Shop Direct as group chief executive.”

Rank said that a further announcement will be made when the group has identified a successor.

“In the meantime Henry will remain in his current role to ensure an orderly handover,” Rank said.

“The board would like to thank Henry for his significant contribution to Rank over the past four years and will continue to work closely with him and the executive management team during this leadership transition.”

Birch had previously enjoyed stints as CEO of both William Hill Online and Leisure & Gaming, having worked in the sector since joining Betting Corp as COO in 2002.