Outgoing boss Bruno Cathelinais had been Bénéteau CEO since 2005 and joined the firm in 1989

French boatbuilding giant Bénéteau Group has parted company with its CEO due to “differences of opinion”.

Bruno Cathelinais (pictured above) spent ten years as Bénéteau CEO, but was unsure over the company’s future direction and succession plans.

In a statement the company explained that the 58-year-old former chief disagreed with plans to require all board members to stand down at the age of 60.

Mr Cathelinais will be immediately replaced by financial director Christophe Caudrelier who will serve as interim CEO while Herve Gastinel, head of the boat division, prepares to take over permanently on August 26.

Investors reacted negatively to the news, which broke yesterday morning (July 28) and sparked a 1.31% drop in Bénéteau shares on the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange. However, the company’s stock is still up more than 30% since the start of the year.

Mr Cathelinais spent 26 years at the firm, holding various roles including general manager before being named Bénéteau CEO in 2005.

As well as building the popular Gran Turismo and Swift Trawler ranges, Bénéteau Group also owns Lagoon, Four Winns, and Monte Carlo Yachts.