Pat Kenny has said he is looking forward to the challenge ahead as he moves to the independent radio sector.
The Independent Broadcasters of Ireland (IBI), the representative body for Ireland's independent radio broadcasters, have welcomed his move.
Kenny will host a current affairs magazine show on Newstalk 106-108 fm every weekday from 10am to 12.30pm, starting on September 2.
IBI Executive Director Lisa Ni Choisdealbha said the new show would "enhance the strong public service programming" of Newstalk.
Mr Kenny said after four decades working in RTE the timing felt right, and he is looking forward to the exciting change.
RTE director general Noel Curran said Kenny will be leaving the organisation with immediate effect.
“Through lengthy negotiations, every effort was made to retain Pat’s services but unfortunately we could not come to an agreement,” he said.
“I would like to wish Pat the very best for the future and I would like to thank him, both personally and as director general for his contribution to broadcasting on RTE.”
Kenny said he was looking forward to the new role.
“I am delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to the growth of Newstalk and to be part of a new team where, hopefully, my experience will also add value,” he said.
“I am relishing the challenge ahead and looking forward to a new chapter in my career, with the world of independent broadcasting, helping to develop Newstalk into the talk radio of choice for listeners countrywide.”
Garrett Harte, station editor, said Kenny’s arrival was a significant milestone for the station.
“Pat is one of Ireland’s most respected broadcasters with an outstanding pedigree in quality journalism,” he said.
“His addition to the Newstalk team will greatly add to our on-air offering and is a further demonstration of the ambition of this station.”
BREAKING: Gay Byrne sits by the telephone, waiting.— Colm Tobin (@colmtobin) July 31, 2013
Pat Kenny is dead to us. DEAD TO US.— Not The RTÉ Guide (@YourRTEGuide) July 31, 2013
Experts say Ireland will run out of Pat Kenny jokes in less than four minutes.— John Moynes (@JohnMoynes) July 31, 2013
Pat Kenny has just blown his chances of getting the Late Late chair.— Shane Hegarty (@shanehegarty) July 31, 2013
Jeepers... Pat Kenny off to Newstalk. I suppose it paves the way for Rooney to Liverpool— desod (@desodr1) July 31, 2013