The FEI, the governing body for equestrian sport, announced today that Carsten Couchouron, the executive director of its commercial department, is to leave the federation after five years.
Couchouron joined the FEI in 2008 from Infront Sports and Media, the international sports marketing agency, where he was associate director of business development.
At the FEI, he has initiated many new projects including FEI TV, licensing and merchandising, branding and digital media. He also contributed to bringing in new sponsorship deals, and the FEI said he had "ensured a steady growth in television coverage, audience share and rights licence fees."
It is unclear if Couchouron will be directly replaced, with FEI secretary general Ingmar De Vos indicating that he will now "review the structure of the commercial department."
De Vos said: "While we of course regret Carsten’s decision to leave us, we have to respect that he feels it is time to move on and explore new horizons, now that he has accomplished his initial mission at the FEI.
"Carsten is leaving us to explore new challenges, but we are not excluding the possibility of future co-operation with him. As a highly qualified professional in sports marketing with in-depth understanding of the very specific challenges of equestrian sport, we may well call on him to work with us as an independent expert."
Couchouron also counts Swatch, the Swiss watch manufacturer, Fifa, soccer's governing body, and ISL, the now-defunct international sports agency that was formerly a marketing partner of Fifa, as former employers.