Hollinger said its board of directors has retained Lazard L.L.C. to review and evaluate its strategic alternatives, including a possible sale of the company.
The company, which has delayed its Securities and Exchange Commission filing because of a review of $32.15 million in non-compete payments made to executives, also announced that Lord Conrad M. Black is stepping down as CEO as of Nov. 21. He will remain as Hollingerâs non-executive chairman.
Gordon A. Paris has been named Hollingerâs interim president-CEO. He is currently a director of the company.
In other moves, the board has also accepted the resignations of F. David Radler as president-COO of Hollinger and as publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times, and of Mark Kipnis, as VP-corporate counsel. Radler and Peter Y. Atkinson have resigned as members of Hollingerâs board of directors, although Atkinson remains an exec VP of Hollinger. Additionally, Black, Radler and Atkinson have agreed to repay Hollinger the full amount of the unauthorized payments received by them, including interest, by June 1, 2004.