Fairfax business journalist Paddy Manning has resigned from the company four days after penning an article for Crikey blasting his employer.

Manning was told to clean out his desk on Monday but did not receive an official termination notice.

Metro Media editorial director Garry Linnell said in a statement: “Paddy Manning has been a terrific business journalist for Fairfax Media for many years, including a successful two-year stint as national chief of staff for BusinessDay, combining the business sections of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. Paddy will be missed. We have accepted his resignation and wish him all the best for the future.”

Fairfax CEO Greg Hywood told ABC Radio National: “Paddy wrote something really undermining his own colleagues and the work that they’ve done. No organisation can really let that stand so we had to let Paddy go … It’s just a matter of principle for us.”

The Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance said: “There is a deep affection within the Sydney Morning Herald for Paddy, both for his enthusiasm and his courageous reporting on issues including climate change and the mixed fortunes of Nathan Tinkler. His departure is deeply felt and regretted by his colleagues, but we are pleased to see that Paddy and Fairfax Media have been able to part ways on mutually agreeable terms.”

In his unsolicited piece, Manning attacked the publication of “rubbishy” sponsored content in the Australian Financial Review and criticised the merger of theSMH/Age business teams and the Australian Financial Review Group into one division. The merger, he argued:

“… tramples on the legacy of quality, independent, consumer- and reader-driven business journalism established at The SMH and The Age. Both papers will be much poorer for it.”

Manning today expressed “heartfelt thanks” to his former colleagues at Fairfax for their support.