Thomson has hired Annelies van den Belt, a former digital director at the Times and Telegraph newspapers and ITV, to head its online publishing arm which specialises in genealogy. Richard Higgs, managing director since 2010 of brightsolid's cloud computing arm, becomes its chief executive.
Brightsolid owns findmypast.co.uk and genesreunited.co.uk, two of the largest genealogy businesses in Europe, and recently launched into the lucrative US market. The company has partnerships with a raft of institutions that are digitising and making available online parts of their historical archives, including the Imperial War Museum and The British Library.
Chairman Richard Hall said the split was "the next natural next phase of DC Thomson's growth strategy for the businesses".
Mr van der Kuyl, a pioneer of Scotland's games industry, chairs 4J Studies which last year co-developed the Minecraft game for Xbox. He said: "This new role offers a great opportunity to work both in an advisory capacity to the DC Thomson board whilst exploring other endeavours outside of the group."
Mr Hall said: "Chris van der Kuyl is an innovator who has made an immense contribution to brightsolid over the last six years."
Ms van den Belt, who was latterly chief executive at the Rambler media group in Russia, said: "Brightsolid has the potential through its current assets and footprint in the English speaking markets to become a leading global player."