TVNZ chief executive Rick Ellis has resigned to take up a new role with Telstra in Australia.
Mr Ellis, who has headed TVNZ for ten years, will become the managing director of the telecommunication firm's new digital media unit in January.
TVNZ chairman Sir John Anderson has praised Mr Ellis's service, saying the company's two channels consolidated their leadership of the free-to-air television market during his tenure.
Sir John says under Mr Ellis TVNZ also moved into digital media, including online, pay TV channels and new digital free-to-air channels.
The unit Mr Ellis will head in Australia will include Telstra's advertising and directories arm Sensis, its internet services provider Bigpond, its classifieds website Trading Post, its IPTV businesses and its partnership with Foxtel.
Telstra says its online digital assets generate $AUS4 billion in annual revenues and employ 4000 people.