AOL CEO Tim Armstrong has the company focusing on five businesses as it attempts a turnaround — content, ad network, communications, local, and ISP.
In a surprise for some, AOL’s video search engine Truveo isn’t one of them.
Truveo has been moved to the newly created AOL Ventures division — the same outhouse where Bebo and other companies AOL (TWX) would like to sell got stuck.
But today we learned from the New York Times that Truveo didn’t get there without a fight from Tim.
NYT: Mr. Armstrong’s five-point plan was also determined by a collaborative process in a two-day meeting in New York. The top 100 employees sorted through three dozen current and potential business lines for the company.
Mr. Armstrong asked simply, “What can we win?” Among the hot debates were what AOL’s role should be in social networking and in search.
Eventually, the assembled employees voted on their top five ideas. Separately, Mr. Armstrong wrote his top five on a blackboard, turning it so the audience could see it only after the vote. The only difference: Mr. Armstrong wanted to include AOL’s Truveo video search company in the top priorities. But he deferred to the group and assigned Truveo instead to a new unit called AOL Ventures, where he is putting noncore businesses, like the Bebo social network, that might eventually be sold.
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