InSight Health Services Corp. said Monday that E. Larry Atkins has resigned as president and chief executive.
Atkins said he and other board members of the Newport Beach-based company had been discussing his departure off and on for about three weeks.
"I think it's good for the shareholders in the sense that I've been here nine years and I think the company needs to be taken to a new level," he said in an interview.
"Under my watch, I think the company has done real well. But the hard fact of the matter is you're judged by what you do for the shareholders, which is how it should be."
The stock has lost nearly 40% of its value over the last year.
The company announced Atkins' departure after U.S. markets closed Monday. InSight shares closed at $6.19, up 56 cents, in Nasdaq trading.
Atkins, 51, has been head of the diagnostic-imaging provider since 1996 when it was formed by the merger of American Health Services Corp. and Dallas-based Maxum Health Corp. Before that, he was chief executive of American Health in Newport Beach.
Chairman Frank E. Egger will serve as interim president and chief executive. Atkins said having Egger at the helm will be a positive change for the company.
InSight said Atkins' departure is not related to the collapse last month of a $28.6-million buyout offer that was withdrawn by investors.
"The company has plans for major expansion, and the board wanted to bring in somebody that has a lot of experience in growing companies to become large companies," Chief Financial Officer Thomas V. Croal said.
Under Atkins' leadership, InSight grew to about $160 million in annual revenue from about $80 million, the company said.
The company said it also eliminated the position of chief operating officer. Croal had held both chief operating officer and chief financial officer positions.
InSight also announced it is eliminating its central region, consolidating its operations into its eastern and western regions. Brian P. Stone will head the eastern region and Michael S. Madler will head the western region. Stone and Madler, who were previously senior vice presidents, have been promoted to executive vice presidents.
Atkins, who also resigned from the board, said he doesn't know what he will do next.