The boss of Saga is to stand down after six years with the over-50s travel and insurance services business.

Group chief executive Lance Batchelor will retire at the end of the company’s financial year in January 2020.

A process has started to recruit his successor, the company said today.

The announcement comes just weeks before the launch of new ship Spirit of Discovery in Dover.

Batchelor said: “It has been a huge privilege to lead Saga. I am very proud of the journey we have taken to modernise the business and refocus it on customers.

“We now have enhanced products and the infrastructure needed for a sustainable and healthy future.

“Over the coming months, I look forward to continuing to execute the new strategy in our insurance business and seeing the launch of Spirit of Discovery in a few weeks.”

Saga chairman Patrick O’Sullivan said: “Lance has led Saga with a resolute focus on reinvestment and rebuilding a truly customer centric organisation.

“In April, we announced the introduction of ‘three-year fixed price’ home and motor insurance products and on 5th July we will launch our new cruise ship, the Spirit of Discovery.

“Early progress in insurance broking is encouraging and we will provide a more detailed update at the AGM next week.

“These developments demonstrate that Saga is a strong business with an attractive future.”