UPDATE 1-Former CEZ boss Martin Roman leaves company after a decade
(Recasts lead, changes sourcing, adds quotes, details)
PRAGUE Oct 25 (Reuters) - Martin Roman, an influential player for a decade in the space where Czech business and politics overlap, quit as supervisory board chairman of electricity producer CEZ on the first day of elections likely to bring a centre-left government to power.
The former CEZ CEO, who was cleared by the finance ministry in 2011 of allegations of irregular dealings with another Czech company, said he was moving on to other projects.
"I do not want my solely personal decision to be connected with political influence from one or the other side," Roman said in a statement on Friday.
Michal Snobr, an analyst with J&T Banka which also is a CEZ shareholder, said Roman was likely getting out before the change of government.
"It was a last chance before politicians start to hunt him after the elections," Snobr said.
Roman joined majority state-owned CEZ as CEO in 2004 and oversaw the firm's expansion into central Europe's largest listed company before resigning and moving to head the supervisory board in 2011.
"After nearly ten years of working in top management positions of the company, I have made a definite decision to leave the CEZ Group and pursue other projects on a full-time basis," Roman said in a CEZ statement.
Under Roman, CEZ's shares soared from 150 crowns to a peak of 1,435 crowns in 2007, also helped by a rise in power prices. Roman and other CEZ managers cashed in tens of millions of euros in stock options as the stock price soared.
The European crisis and related slump in power prices knocked CEZ's stock to eight-year lows below 500 crowns this year. Shares closed down 0.4 percent at 511.90 crowns on Friday, giving it market capitalisation of $14.7 billion.
An internal probe ordered by the finance ministry in 2011 found no irregularities in deals between CEZ and Skoda Power.
Roman denied he had any relationship with Skoda Power, which became part of South Korea's Doosan Group in 2009.
The Czech finance minister also ordered CEZ earlier this year to carry out an external audit of the 2008 sale of a subsidiary to Hungarian oil and gas group MOL.
CEZ has a central role in the country of 10.5 million people and its chiefs have in the past changed along with political influence. Roman outlasted both right and left-wing governments while he was CEO.
Opinion polls show the Social Democrats, led by ex-finance minister Bohuslav Sobotka, emerging as the largest party with about 26 percent after elections on Friday and Saturday but they will need a coalition partner to form a government.
Vice-Chairman Vaclav Paces will chair the CEZ supervisory board until a new chief is elected.
Michal Mejstrik and Jan Mares were voted on to the supervisory board on Friday, CEZ said.
Media reported on Thursday that Roman could be replaced by Mejstrik, an economics professor who has served on the previous centre-right government's economic advisory panel and owns an investment advisory firm. (Reporting by Jan Lopatka and Jason Hovet; Editing by David Cowell)
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