THE chief executive of technology firm Promethean has announced his resignation after a dramatic drop in revenues.

Jean-Yves Charlier said he would step down from the Blackburn-based school whiteboard maker in October to explore 'a new direction in his career'.

It comes as the company revealed revenue had dropped 22.9 per cent to £83.2million in the six months to June 2012.

The company, which makes interactive tools, displays and systems for use in classrooms, also reported an operating loss, before tax, of £148.5millon.

The loss was caused by a non-cash goodwill impairment of £140.5million, a company statement said.

Announcing the results, Mr Charlier said: "The education market is facing a major challenge.

"On the one hand, the benefits of classroom technology are increasingly recognised by teachers and educational authorities around the world.

"At the same time, budgetary pressures are seriously constraining educational spending. This has meant that while the speed of adoption of educational classroom technology has been slower than anticipated, the manner of its evolution has not.

“Against this difficult market backdrop, we have made further good progress with our technology and product offering."

The company, which employs 200 people in Blackburn, said it was assuming there would be no improvement in market conditions in the near-term and now planned to reduce its operating cost base by up to 25 per cent from 2011 levels.

Jim Marshall, currently president of Promethean’s North American business, has been appointed as chief executive designate and will become chief executive following Mr Charlier's departure.

Mr Charlier joined Promethean World in 2007 as chief executive and has led the management team since that time.

Mr Marshall has more than 30 years of experience in high technology and educational businesses, including Apple and Oracle. He joined Promethean World in April 2011.