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KSL Talks With Initiative Down To The Wire

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NEW YORK -- KSL Media, a subsidiary of the former True North, which was swallowed up by the Interpublic Group of Cos. two months ago, is set to conclude talks by the end of next week with IPG's Initiative Media North America about KSL's possibly regaining its independent status, sources said.

During the last few weeks, KSL's status was something of an afterthought, with its focus on integrating TN Media into its fold, a process that was completed last week. Now, with KSL as the last piece of business left over from the True North acquisition, the decision seems likely that it will be let go, assuming both parties can agree on the right price.

"Obviously, Interpublic doesn't need another media service," said a source close to the situation. "KSL is a small, entrepreneurial company. I don't see a place for it at such a huge behemoth as IPG."

Kal Liebowitz, KSL's president declined to comment and Initiative representatives were unavailable.

KSL has suffered some major hits the past few months, with claimed billings having shrunk from around $600 million to an estimated $200 million this year, according to sources.