Bethenny Frankel Is Leaving The Real Housewives of New York City
"My experience at Bravo has been an incredibly magical ride," Bethenny Frankel said
Bethenny Frankel‘s time as a Housewife is coming to an end once again.
“I have decided to leave the Housewives franchise to explore my next chapter,” Frankel, 48, said in a statement to PEOPLE.
“It’s time to move on and focus on my daughter, my philanthropy and my production partnership with Mark Burnett, producing and starring in shows which represent a shift in the conversation for women,” said Frankel, who is mom to 9-year-old daughter Bryn, whom she shares with ex Jason Hoppy.
“With the changes in modern culture, I want to highlight the strength, confidence and unstoppable power that women have. My experience at Bravo has been an incredibly magical ride,” she continued. “I am so grateful to them for highlighting my entrepreneurialism and allowing me to pave the way for many women to achieve their goals. I am excited for my future. The best is yet to come.”
Bravo did not respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Following news of Frankel’s exit, was first reported by Variety, Ramona Singer — who began on RHONY with Frankel and has never missed a season of the franchise — told PEOPLE exclusively that she “respects the fact that Bethenny has decided to go on with other endeavors.”
“Bethenny found love in her life, and it’s so fantastic that she’ll be taking the time to grow that relationship away from the cameras and to explore other business opportunities,” said Singer, 62.
“I’m only disappointed that Bethenny did not inform her costars that she’s not coming back to the show,” Singer added. “When she left in season 4, we found out through the press she was doing her spinoff, Bethenny Getting Married. She was upset we never congratulated her, but we were upset she never told us! And that’s how we feel now. There is a camaraderie among us as a cast. Love us, hate us, not like us — we are a team. To hear this from the press and not through her is upsetting.“
“I really wish her well, though,” Singer continued. “The show’s a machine and it will continue on. We’re all just a cog in the wheel. No one is irreplaceable.”
The mother of one joined the Bravo reality series in season 1, but exited during season 3. Frankel later rejoined during season 7 and has starred on the show since.
Her departure comes after costar Luann de Lesseps hinted this week that a new Housewife may be joining the fold when the show returns for season 12.
The topic came about on Michelle Collins‘ SiriusXM show on Monday, when Collins asked de Lesseps about a rumor that Singer is gunning for the show to cast Missy Pool, an ex-girlfriend of de Lesseps’ ex-husband Tom D’Agostino.
“I don’t think that’s going to happen,” said de Lesseps, 54. Pressed to explain why, she revealed, “Because I think they already cast somebody else. Can’t tell you who, but I think they did!”
“Don’t quote me,” she added. As for whether the potential incomer is married or single? De Lesseps wouldn’t bite.
“I don’t know,” she said. “I can’t tell you that.”
A premiere date for RHONY‘s return has not yet been announced.