The entrepreneur, who will become executive deputy chairman from February, plans to free up time for other start-up opportunities. He's done pretty well out of his first big venture. Nixon owns nearly 54% of the company, which offers comparisons on money, insurance, utilities, travel, broadband, shopping, mobiles and motor. He floated it last year for £840m.
Nixon is a regular fixture at the top end of MT's annual Top 100 Entrepreneurs list, in which he was runner-up last year. He launched moneysupermarket.com in 1999, having dropped out of university and begun developing tools for mortgage brokers to match products to customers' needs. Revenue was £104.5m in 2006, and Nixon managed to raise that by 59.9% to £162.9m in 2007.
His decision to step back is, he says, a product of these entrepreneurial instincts, which often kick in when founders build a business to a certain size. ‘You know in your gut when it's time to step aside and let the people you've brought in take over and move the business forward,' he said. ‘It's a completely different business to what it has been.'