Brokerage industry pioneer Peter Brown is leaving the firm he started, which has since grown to become Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. (TSX:CF).

Effective May 23, Brown has resigned as a director and officer of the company, and the firm says he will not be seeking re-election to its board of directors at its upcoming annual general meeting.

Brown is not retiring, however. He intends to get into the private equity business, advising established private companies that need financing.

Brown got his start in the investment business with Greenshields Inc. in 1962. He founded the firm which was to become Canaccord Genuity in 1968. Among numerous other directorships, he is also currently chairman of the right-wing think tank, the Fraser Institute, and a vice chairman of the Investment Industry Association of Canada (IIAC). He was also B.C.’s representative on the advisory committee to the Canadian Securities Transition Office (CSTO), which was to lead the transition to a single securities regulator.

Speaking about his departure from Canaccord, Brown said, “I am proud of the progress made by current senior management. Building on a solid base, they have embarked on a very dynamic global expansion that has never before been envisioned by a Canadian independent investment dealer … I look forward to the firm’s continued exciting growth and development.”