THE executive chairman of Swindon-based firm Excalibur will step down at the start of the next financial year.

Former CEO James Phipps will leave the role after 22 years with the company following the completion of the management buy-out by the current management team.

He said: "“I am very proud of what Excalibur has achieved since I joined the company in 1998, culminating in the buy-out, which marks a new era for the company.

"I have enjoyed my continued involvement as executive chairman for two years, supporting the five-year growth plan, but as an entrepreneur at heart, it’s time for new ventures and developing my charitable foundation.”

The communications and IT solutions provider reported a 13 per cent rise in its annual turnover - up to a total of £9.2 million.

This followed another year of strong growth for the company’s IT and fixed line business plus an increase in revenues from its mobile business. Profitability has risen by 24 per cent to £1.6 million.

CEO Peter Boucher said: “Healthy financials are very important for Excalibur, but there is more to our story than pure profitability.

"I believe our focus on doing more for customers and investing in new products is driving the business.

"This year, we concentrated on expanding our product portfolio and exclusively launched CityFibre gigabit internet services in Swindon.

"We have introduced a cyber security evaluation system and implemented a cloud security platform for mobile customers.

“I would also like to thank James for his great contribution to Excalibur and his wise guidance as executive chairman.

"He was not only instrumental in building a healthy business, but creating a great, open company culture with professionalism, trust and charity at its core.”

Excalibur employees were awarded their second pay-out of the company £1 million bonus scheme which recognises their contribution to meeting specific business plan milestones set by the management team.

The team fundraised £30,000 for charities in the Swindon area and finished the National Three Peaks Challenge.