The chief executive at leading energy trade body, Energy North, has announced he is to leave his post next year after eight years at the organisation's helm.

Ian Couper, who oversaw Energy North's transition from the North of Scotland Industry Group (NSIG) in 2006, plans to depart in May 2015. Recruitment for a replacement will commence in the New Year.

As chief executive, Mr Couper led Energy North's transformation from a 30-member group into a 220-strong membership organisation which represents the energy industry and supply chain in all corners of the Highlands and Islands and North East of Scotland.

Speaking of his contribution, Energy North chairman, James Mowat, commented: "Ian has made a tremendous contribution to the success of Energy North. Our staff and board truly appreciate his committed leadership and dedicated service over the past eight years.

"Energy North began as a small group of likeminded organisations, and through Ian's leadership it is now one of Scotland's strongest industry voices.

"On behalf of the board I'd like to wish Ian every success for the future and I look forward to working with him until his departure in six months' time to deliver our plans for the New Year."

Mr Couper added: "Over these past eight years I've seen Energy North grow into a committed organisation that is dedicated to serving its members and helping the region's energy industry reach its utmost potential. I will continue to work with members, the Energy North team and the board to achieve this goal until I leave in May.

"Being chief executive at Energy North has been one of the most rewarding and enjoyable positions of my working career. I'd like to thank the team at Energy North and all our members for their support and dedication. It is a very exciting time for the north energy industry, and I strongly believe the best is yet to come for the region."

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