NEW YORK: The US fast food giant McDonald’s Corp. has fired its Chief Executive Steve Easterbrook because of his consensual relationship with an employee, the latest challenge for the company as it races to keep up with changes reverberating throughout the food industry.

The McDonald Corp said Sunday that its board voted Friday to terminate Mr. Easterbrook after investigating his relationship with the unnamed employee. Mr. Easterbrook resigned from McDonald’s board as well. He wrote in an email to McDonald’s employees on Sunday that he had violated company rules and regulations. "Given the values of the company, I agree with the board that it is time for me to move on," he said. Easterbrook, 52, who is divorced, first worked for McDonald's in 1993 as a manager in London before working his way up the company.

He was appointed as CEO in the year 2015. Easterbrook is widely credited with revitalizing the firm's menus and restaurants, by remodeling stores and using better ingredients. The value of its shares more than doubled during his tenure in the US. Under his leadership, McDonald's also expanded its delivery and mobile payment options to emphasize convenience.