Leicestershire-based Samworth Brothers has announced that its chief executive Alex Knight has stepped down from his post.

Knight, who has worked as a consultant for the business for the past 20 years, took over the chief executive role in January 2016 after replacing Lindsey Pownall.

“Alex has worked with the group for over 20 years, but believes the business is best served by a change in structure,” said Nick Linney, Samworth Brothers chairman in a statement.

“During his period as group chief executive, Alex has made an enormous contribution to the business and his leadership has been notable for his hard work, strong values and commitment during a busy period. We thank him for this.”

Following the resignation, Samworth director Mark Samworth will become chairman of the group executive board and take on the day-to-day running of the business until a new chief executive is appointed.

Knight led Samworth’s investment into its staff and facilities, that saw revenues top £900m in October 2016.

In January 2017, Samworth Brothers acquired West Cornwall Pasty Co from private equity investor Endless LLP.