For the next six months Lynton will stay on as co-CEO of Sony Entertainment, overseeing the Pictures and Music businesses, and as CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Sony Corporation of America, to work with Sony Corporation’s President and CEO Kazuo Hirai to find a replacement.
"I have been involved with Evan and Snapchat since its early days, and given its growth since then, decided the time was right to transition and focus on my role as Chairman of the Board of Snap Inc," said Lynton in a statement.
He spent 13 years with Sony, beginning in 2004 as chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment, and in 2012 was named CEO of Sony Entertainment.
Lynton's move to focus on Snapchat comes ahead of the social platform's IPO, which is expected as early as Q1 this year. Industry observers are forecasting that its eventual valuation could be as high as $30bn.