Amazon UK managing director Brian McBride has stepped down from his role for health reasons.

McBride, who joined Amazon UK in January 2006, said: “It has been a privilege to be at Amazon for the past five years and it is time for me to focus on my medical condition.  I will soon begin treatment for prostate cancer and my doctor is optimistic about a positive outcome.  I will truly miss the entire UK team but this is the right time to hand over the reins.”

Vice president for media products Christopher North will take over the reins of the etailer’s UK operations. North joined in October 2006 as head of books before taking up the role of vice president of media which includes books, music, DVD, software, video games, MP3 and print on demand.  

Amazon’s senior vice president for international retail Diego Piacentini paid tribute to McBride’s contribution at the online retail giant.

“Brian’s steady leadership has embodied Amazon’s obsession with customers and I want to thank him for his tremendous contributions over these last five years. We are relieved to hear his condition is fully treatable and we respect his decision to step down at this time—he will be missed.  Every member of the Amazon family wishes Brian a speedy recovery,” said Piacentini.

Amazon EU vice president for European Retail Greg Greeley said North is “a customer focused leader who has earned a high level of respect from his peers and the entire team.”