After being on X-Factor for 13 long years, the show confirmed that Louis Walsh has decided to bow out of the legendary ITV talent show.

Louis has been one of the longest-running judges to appear on X-Factor as he has been part of the show ever since it first started in the year 2014. He will, though, continue to remain a key talent for Thames and Syco, notably as the head judge on Ireland’s Got Talent which returns in 2019.

Louis confirms his exit from the show (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)
Louis confirms his exit from the show (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)

At the same time, Sharon Osbourne who has appeared on seven series will also be seen in an exciting new role which will see her appear as a judge on The X Factor’s live episodes. These developments indicate that UK’s most popular music talent show, which returns to ITV for its 15th series later this year is ready to begin a new era. 

“I’ve had a fantastic 13 years on The X Factor but the show needs a change and I’m ready to leave," Louis said of his exit. 

“I’m looking forward to another series of Ireland’s Got Talent, going back to my day job as a manager, writing my memoirs and seeing the world!” he added.

Meanwhile, Sharon is quite excited to get back to judging. “I can’t wait to get back to the judges’ desk. I love the new format," she said. Thames Managing Director, Amelia Brown also acknowledged the incredible work Louis has done on the show over the years.

Sharon will be appearing for one more season (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)
Sharon will be appearing for one more season (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

"Louis has been a huge part of The X Factor’s success since it launched and remains a good friend of the show. His contribution cannot be overstated. We would like to thank him for all he has given to the show over the years and look forward to continuing to work with him in the future," she said. 

She added: “We are very excited Sharon is taking on a new role on the show and we can’t wait to see her as a judge on the live episodes. This is the start of a new era for The X Factor. I am really excited about all the ideas we have for the coming series including, of course, the new judging panel.”

Creator Simon Cowell will return to The X Factor for the new series with three new fellow judges being announced in due course. Judges’ auditions for The X Factor 2018 will take place at The SSE Arena, Wembley while more than 30,000 contestants have so far entered the 2018 series.