Nigel Stapleton is stepping down from his role as chairman of European chilled foods group Uniq at the end of the year.

Uniq said that Stapleton, who has been chairman since July 2001, would leave his post on 31 December.

Stapleton has held a number of chairmanship roles throughout his career, including for the Postal Services Commission, merchant bank Veronis, Suhler Stevenson International and advertising agency Cordiant Communications. He also worked at Unilever for 18 years in a number of planning, finance and general management positions and at publishing company Reed Elsevier for 13 years.

He will be replaced by deputy chairman and non-executive director Ross Warburton, who joined Uniq's board of directors last month. Warburton was executive chairman of Warburtons from 1991 to 2001, taking the company from a regional bakery business to a national organisation supplying major multiples. He has also held a number of chairmanship and non-executive roles.