Romania’s leading cable and DTH operator RCS&RDS will mark an important change today (Tuesday, April 14), when its chairman and CEO Alexandru Oprea leaves after 18 years with the company.

The news was first announced on April 10, an in an official statement Oprea said: “I am honoured that I was able to participate in the development and consolidation of a company which I consider exemplary for the private sector in Romania.

“I am sure that in telecommunications, RCS & RDS will continue to be a household name and remain at least as competitive. I wish also, that like the Digi Sport and Digi 24 projects, documentaries and film channels continue their rise and take the same steps toward civilisation and professional media, for which they were designed.

“I wish that in the future, whenever you hear of RCS&RDS and Digi trust, to be proud that I was part of this remarkable project”.

Oprea’s departure has taken the local industry by surprise, with many wondering as to the future direction of the company.

At one stage a leading player in the TV markets in several CEE countries, it has recently retrenched back to ones it considers core to its business, chiefly Romania and Hungary. More recently, it has also strengthened its position in Romania, including through acquisitions.

ZF notes that RCS&RDS’s turnover has increased 13-fold in the last 10 years and amounted to RON2.15 billion (€487.8 million) in 2014.

It currently has over 3.2 million TV customers and around 1.8 million opting for its fixed internet services, which generate the most income.

While RCS&RDS has in recent years increased its market share in cable, internet (fixed and mobile) and telephony (fixed and mobile), it has lost ground to competitors, wuch as UPC, Telekom and Orange, in the provision of DTH services.