HMV managing director David Pryde is to leave the music chain and will be replaced by Waterstone's boss Steve Knott.
Pryde has resigned for personal reasons and Knott will take the helm from April 14. Brian McLaughlin, HMV's group chief operating officer, will be acting managing director of HMV-owned Waterstone's until a replacement is found.
An HMV spokesman said: 'We will get someone (as man aging director of Waterstone's) as soon as possible, but we want the right person so we don't have a timescale.'
Knott spent eight years at HMV from 1990 and rose to the position of operations director. He returned to the group in 2001 as managing director of Waterstone's.