iStockphoto Founder leaves Getty Images

Webware is reporting this afternoon that Montreal-born Bruce Livingstone, founder and leader of microstock pioneer iStockphoto, is leaving the company he sold to Getty Images three years ago.

Livingstone, who launched the low-cost photo-licensing company nine years ago, said he’s leaving of his own volition, according to a forum posting from iStock COO Kelly Thompson, who is taking over Livingstone’s duties.

“This is my last communication as CEO of iStockphoto and SVP Consumer at Getty Images. It’s been a difficult decision, but it’s the right moment to move on,” Livingstone said. “I need more time with my family, and time to figure out what I’m going to do next. Anybody who knows me, knows I’m a bit of a workaholic. So I’m finally going to make some time for myself and the people in my life.”

According to Webware, Livingstone’s departure was for personal reasons and is unrelated to recent layoffs at Getty.

Kudos to Livingstone for sticking around for three years and continuing to grow the business he started. He could have easily moved on after cashing in with a majority of the $50 Million pricetag Getty paid. Instead he relocated from Calgary to Seattle and was key in helping his iStockphoto grow to $200 Million in annual revenue.

Photo credit: Stephen Shankland/CNET