Gavin O'Reilly has resigned as chairman and director of APN News and Media after leaving its Irish parent, Independent News and Media.
Mr O'Reilly's departure is part of a compromise agreement approved by Independent News and Media's board after months of pressure from the firm's major shareholder Denis O'Brien.
INM was built up by Mr O'Reilly's father, Tony, and the family have run the business for 40 years.
Mr O'Reilly says recent public and shareholder tensions were proving an unnecessary distraction for himself and the company and it was not in the firm's best interests.
INM owns almost 30% of APN, which publishes The New Zealand Herald.