John Malone, managing director of Premier Mortgage Services, cemented his plan to retire last week with the recruitment of a successor, but pledged to remain in the industry as a non-executive for as long as he is wanted.Malone made Steve Atkins, currently head of The Mortgage Alliance, an offer he couldn’t refuse – to take over the management of mortgage sales at Premier Mortgage Service and work alongside him to learn the business before eventually taking over as his successor. Speaking from Monte Carlo, Malone says: “I’ve worked in the industry for the best part of 40 years and have created a few businesses in that time. But it’s time for youth to take a more active role. “I’ll still be at PMS for the next couple of years because I enjoy what I do. I work hard and play hard. And I will continue as a non-executive in the industry for as long as I can because I want to give something back to it.” Atkins has more than 15 years’ experience in the mortgage market and has spent the past three years as head of The Mortgage Alliance, part of the Abbey group. He was unavailable to comment on his appointment.