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Craig resigns as Leitch CEO, company hints at changes to come

TORONTO - Canadian Broadcast and production gear manufacturer Leitch Technology today announced some changes at the top of its management team.

The board of directors has appointed Stan Kabala as interim president and CEO following the resignation of Margaret Craig from that role. "A board-directed search for a permanent successor, with proven experience in the company's core professional video and broadcast markets, has been initiated," said the company's press release this morning.

As well, Salil Munjal, currently vice-president, corporate development, has been appointed to the newly created position of COO. The changes are effective immediately and no other management changes are associated with today's announcement.

"We greatly appreciate Margaret's contribution to the company and wish her well. She and the board have recently discussed the pace of activity in our cost control programs. Her amicable departure reflects the mutual understanding that the board wishes to accelerate the pursuit of those programs while continuing to pursue revenue growth. Ms. Craig will assist in an orderly transition building on the strategy developed during her tenure," said David Chaikof, chairman of the board, alluding to what has led to Craig's departure and hinting that some internal changes may be coming at Leitch.

"The company's focus during this period remains on our current strategy," Chaikof added. "We are committed to our existing customer relationships and product development activity."

"Stan Kabala is well qualified to guide the company through this interim period," Chaikof said. "He brings a knowledge of the company and four decades of business experience in the communications industry to his role."

A director of Leitch since 1996, he has held chief executive positions in a number of private and public companies in Canada and the United States, including stints as chief executive at Unitel and Cantel (now Rogers AT&T; Wireless).

Kabala views this as the title says - interim - and will not be a candidate for the permanent position.

"My priority will be to help our business leaders accelerate the drive to increase revenue, reduce costs and return the company to profitability without adversely impacting our core strategy," said Kabala. "The company's underlying strengths will assist us in emerging as a winner from the current market uncertainty."

As COO, Munjal will oversee the company's day-to-day business activities. He has served Leitch in a number of capacities, including as general counsel and most recently as vice-president, corporate development.

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