Fran to stand down as CEO of the two companies effective January 1st 2012 but to continue as Chairman. Peter Leathem, appointed Managing Director, with immediate effect, will succeed Nevrkla as CEO, PPL and VPL in the New Year.

Fran Nevrkla has today announced his succession plan for music and video licensing companies PPL and VPL.

With unanimous approval from the Boards, Nevrkla, who was appointed to his current position in October 2000, has decided to step down as CEO of PPL and VPL at the end of the year, whilst remaining as Chairman. Peter Leathem has been named as the new Chief Executive Officer from 1 January 2012 and with immediate effect is appointed Managing Director of PPL and VPL in advance of assuming the role of CEO.

"I am thrilled and deeply honoured to be appointed CEO of the company at the beginning of 2012," said Peter Leathem. "My thanks firstly must go to Fran who has taken the company to a level that would have been unforeseen by the industry when he came here in 2000. In that time I have learnt a huge amount from him which I know will stand me in good stead to face the inevitable challenges that will come in the future. In seeking to continue the progress that PPL has made since 2000 it is reassuring for me to know that Fran's experience and guidance will be retained as he stays on as Chairman. I would also like to thank the Boards for showing their faith in me. As the industry continues its evolution, I am fully aware of the responsibility of running a company that this century has already collected nearly one and a quarter billion pounds in licensing revenue. I very much look forward to working with all the company's stakeholders to manage the rights mandated to us."

Peter Leathem joined PPL as Head of Legal and Business Affairs in 2002 and, following several positions within the company since that time, was appointed Executive Director in October 2008. Prior to joining the company, he was a partner for 8 years with city law firm GSC Solicitors, where he specialised in intellectual property and was Head of the Intellectual Property Department. Succeeding Peter Leathem in his capacity as Company Secretary will be David Harmsworth, Head of Legal and Business Affairs

"I am delighted that the succession plan which has been carefully thought through received the unanimous support of the Boards. I considered it my absolute duty to ensure that when the time comes I can hand the reins over to someone who knows the business and can be trusted to carry on the good work," said Fran Nevrkla. "Much has been achieved over the last 10 years but yet more has to be done and strived for and Peter's appointment will provide the necessary degree of stability and continuity to the organisation which is so important to ensure further successes and achievements in the future."

Fran continued, "Peter and I have worked very closely and effectively together for the last several years and I look forward to supporting him in my role as Chairman for a little longer. I must say an enormous thank you to all my friends, colleagues and contacts in the wider music industry, the political arena and elsewhere for their visible and loyal support and encouragement to me personally over the years. A special thank you goes to the main PPL Board, the Performer Board and the various committees all of whom have played such a crucial role during the "PPL journey"."