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Schultz Steps Down

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LOS ANGELES--Lou Schultz, chairman and CEO of Initiative Media Worldwide, is stepping down after two years at the helm of the Interpublic Group of Cos. global media network, according to sources. Schultz is expected to remain with IPG in an as yet undecided role.

Initiative, which has struggled to win major new business for more than a year, parted with its flagship client, The Walt Disney Co., in a $500 million media consolidation won by Starcom late last month.

No replacement has been named. Carat USA head David Verklin was a leading candidate, sources said. However, Verklin said he is "certainly not in the running. I'm definitely staying with Carat."

Neither IPG chairman John Dooner nor Schultz were available for comment on Friday.