The Chief Executive of FBD Andrew Langford is to step down immediately stating that he believes the time is right for somebody new to lead the company through its next phase.

Fiona Muldoon, Group Finance Director and Board member, has been appointed Interim Chief Executive.

Muldoon will assume overall executive responsibility for the company pending completion of a selection process expected to conclude without any delay, FBD says.

Upon his resignation, Langford said that after 19 years with FBD, including seven as CEO, he believes the time is right for somebody new to lead FBD through its next phase.

“I have really enjoyed the challenges and have been fortunate to be part of a great Irish company working with the best people who always go the extra mile for our customers,” he said.

FBD Chairman, Mr. Michael Berkery said that the Board would like to thank Andrew Langford for his contribution to the Company over the last 19 years.

“I am delighted that Andrew has agreed to make his experience and services available to the Company for the next financial year in a consultancy capacity.

“During his stewardship, as CEO for seven years and previously as Finance Director, FBD has grown significantly in the Irish insurance market.,” he said.

Langford’s resignation comes on the back of FBD reporting operating losses of €4.7m for last year with profitability in 2014 significantly impacted by a severe deterioration in the market claims environment and the worst weather experienced in the company’s history.

Storm Darwin affected 9,000 FBD customers last year and cost FBD €15.2m it announced as part of its preliminary results for 2014.

In 2014, FBD’s customers and its profitability were impacted by the bad weather, an increase in claims frequency associated with economic growth, poor large claims experience and adverse development of some prior year injury claims. FBD’s loss ratio increased from 67.9% to 86.0%.

At the insurer’s AGM earlier this year, FBD and its directors came under criticism for the sharp downturn the company’s share value.

The directors were also accused of presiding over the biggest destruction of wealth on the Irish stock exchange last year.