Eric Salama has decided to step down as CEO of Kantar, now that WPP has completed the sale of a 60 percent stake in the data business to Bain Capital.

The 58-year-old called the move a "personal decision" made in the aftermath of an attempted robbery and stabbing last January outside a café in the toney Kew section of London.

Salama, who suffered a punctured lung during the attack, told the Financial Times the incident has made him think "on what to do over the next few years."

He returned to work a week following the attack but in retrospect says that was too early.

Salama suffered from sleep issues for the next three months and now looks behind himself when walking home from the underground station, according to the FT.

He discussed his decision to retire with both Bain and WPP and said they were surprised as anyone and gracious.

Salama, who was among candidates to succeed former WPP CEO Martin Sorrell, will help in the search for a new CEO at Kantar and join the board as part-time non-executive director.