'It's about timing. I can still work for another 20 years,' Kivinen said. Chair of the Yle board Thomas Wilhelmsson confirms that Kivinen's departure is not linked to anything out of the ordinary: 'I understand his decision. Considering his age, this was surely a wise decision in terms of his career development. The decision was entirely Lauri's initiative,' he remarked.
Kivinen has worked as the public broadcaster's CEO for the last eight years, joining Yle from his previous employer, Germany's branch of Nokia Siemens Networks. During his term as Yle's leader, the CEO position was changed from a limited 5-year position to one in which the term of service was indefinite.
His time at Yle was characterised by several big changes. Yle funding switched from a license fee system to a tax in 2013, and the company went through multiple rounds of redundancies under public pressure to downsize. The company also took substantial steps to strengthen and develop its internet presence.