The Coats Group, an investment holding company with interests in Europe, Australia and New Zealand, has announced its non-executive director, Sir Ron Brierley, has resigned from the board.
Sir Ron, 77, has been on the board of Guinness Peat Group for 25 years, including 20 years as chairman.
The company says the resignation takes immediate effect.
The firm's chairman, Mike Clasper, has thanked Mr Brierley , who was board chair from 1990 to 2010.
Mr Brierley has been the director of a number of companies across Australia, New Zealand and the UK - and is a well-known stamp collector.
Guinness Peat recently renamed itself Coats, as it's the last remaining business after the company sold off all its other assets.
Sir Ron's reign as both a chairman and then director has been controversial at times, especially over corporate governance issues.
Business commentator Rod Oram said Sir Ron's retirement from the board was long overdue.
"This is a company that now needs to be led by young business builders, rather than somebody like Sir Ron who is rather more successful in making money taking businesses apart, rather than building them up," he said.