Lord Conrad Black's Hollinger Incorporated [H-Inc], the Toronto-listed holding company that holds a 30% controlling stake in newspaper publisher Hollinger International [H-Intl], announced over the weekend it is to delay indefinitely the release of its year-end results. Also the date of its mandatory annual meeting.
Both delays are blamed on the fracas between H-Inc and its now notional subsidiary H-Intl: "[The hold up is] primarily the result of the material change in the relationship between Hollinger and Hollinger International," read an H-Inc statement.
The shareholders' committee currently in the driving seat at H-Intl announced in March it had put its 2003 results on hold, also its annual shareholder meeting.
Both events wait on the outcome of an in-depth accounts probe by the company's auditors; also the completion of an internal inquiry into the affairs of the company and its former directors.
Given that the majority of the holding company's income derives from 'management fees' paid by H-Intl, Black has little option but to follow suit.
H-Inc will miss the May 19 deadline imposed by Canadian securities authorities for the filing of 2003 annual accounts. It will likewise miss the filing due May 15 of its Q1 2004 statement.
Data sourced from: Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff