AOL (TWX): AOL Puerto Rico Unplugged (and More)

We’re hearing AOL Puerto Rico was shut down today.  Half the staff axed immediately, the rest hanging around until January.

We also hear AOL is “hiring back” a handful of Systems Operations people who got blown out in October (and who aren’t even off the payroll yet).  If true, this would seem to confirm some of the initial concerns that there wouldn’t be enough people left to run the place.

Separately, we hear that AOL’s senior management (Randy Falco and Ron Grant) have made a major effort to rebuild relationships in Dulles: Lots of face time, lots of listening, lots of explaining.  This is good news.  We also hear there is a very Bewkesian initiative in place to push power down to the individual business units (Bewkes has never been one for “synergy”).  Given that AOL will increasingly live and die on the strength of its individual business brands, this decentralization makes sense.

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