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Lanham Napier steps down as CEO, but will remain with the company as a consultant. He will advise and invest in startups.

Lanham Napier steps down as CEO, but will remain with the company as a consultant. He will advise and invest in startups.

Hosting and cloud service provider Rackspace announced that its long-time chief executive officer Lanham Napier is stepping down. He will be replaced by co-founder and executive chairman Graham Weston while the company searches for a long-term successor.

Napier, who has spent nearly a decade and a half with Rackspace, will remain as a consultant with the company. He plans to advise other startups and take on an investor role, though declined to indicate whether or not he has joined a venture capital firm in such a capacity.

“It has been a privilege to be part of Rackspace for the past fourteen years,” said Napier.

“My decision to step down as CEO was a difficult one, but it’s the right choice for me and for the company. With the board and management team aligned around our 2014 strategy and financial plan, I believe now is a natural transition point to select a new leader for the next exciting phase of Rackspace’s growth. I look forward to following Rackspace’s success as I return to my entrepreneurial roots – to build new things and invest in disruptive ideas.”

Weston, who previously spent seven years as the company’s chief esecutive officer, said he was honoured to have served with Napier and looks forward to partnering with recently appointed Rhodes as the two continue to execute on the company’s strategy in traditional hosting and cloud.

Napier’s retirement comes at a time when the cloud services provider reported relatively steady revenue growth for the past couple of quarters.

In Q4 2013 the company reported growth of 15.6 per cent reaching $408m, just shy of Q3 growth levels (15.7 per cent). Its public cloud revenue, now 29 per cent of the company’s revenue, grew 34 per cent year on year during the same quarter.

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