Argos parent Home Retail chief executive Terry Duddy is to step down from his role and a search for his successor is beginning.

Duddy, who has led Home Retail for the last seven years, will stand down by the time of its next AGM on July 2, 2014.

Group chairman John Coombe will lead the search for his successor,which will include internal and external candidates.

Coombe said: “Terry is one of the longest serving chief executives in the industry and he has provided strong leadership during one of the toughest periods of economic uncertainty faced by the business. 

“As a result of the group’s exceptional cash generation in recent years, we have the financial strength to support both Argos and Homebase in delivering their strategic plans.  The group has a strong management team in place and we are delighted that Terry will continue to lead the group as we manage the orderly appointment of his successor.”   

Duddy said: “It has been a great privilege to lead this group for 15 years, including the last seven as the chief executive of Home Retail Group.  We have achieved a great deal in that time and the positive momentum of the business is now such that I feel the time is right to move onto the next stage in my career.”

“We have built a great management team and I look forward to continue working with them during the coming year to progress the exciting strategies that we have established for both businesses.”