Tim Armstrong had some strong words about the people that have left AOL in the last few months.”The reality is, and I hate to be blunt about it, I’ve been removing people from the company that are not performing, and that’s OK,” he said this morning at the Barclays Internet conference.
We grabbed a transcript of the coversation from a Bloomberg terminal.
He was asked about the drama that surrounds AOL.
On everyone leaving TechCrunch he said:
The press, the media, and media loves to write about our company and I hear that from investors like, I mean, they say things like the TechCrunch situation last summer which was something that took a lot of time and energy. But it’s half – it’s less than half of per cent of our revenue or traffic. So, people like to make that situation like the sky was falling. And in actuality, it basically had no material impact on our business. And from that standpoint, TechCrunch is an important brand, and we’re actually looking at investing in TechCrunch.
We think he’s missing the point. The big deal about the Arrington-Arianna drama was that Armstrong couldn’t control his star talents. They were fighting each other and ruining the brand. He should have been able to control them.
He was later talked about the “talent drain” at AOL recently. His answer will probably infuriate ex-AOLers. We’re bolding the most relevant parts:
The management team has gotten stronger over the last year. And there’s a lot noise about people coming, people going from AOL. But the reality is, and I hate to be blunt about it, I’ve been removing people from the companies that are not performing, and that’s OK. And I think our results – we removed a bunch people out of the company, our results got better…
I mean, we’ve got a shareholder letter from somebody who said, “Oh, my god, all these talents left.” I look for the talents, first of all, half the names were spelled incorrectly. And second of all is that the people removed, their departments are performing better.
So, I mean, as an investor, do you want me to go to rehire those people, or do you want me to keep running the company for performance and accountability and those things? And I think that’s something that – I care about employees. I care about the customers. I care about how we do. And I think that gets misunderstood.
The world may look at AOL with a lot of drama. But I think we’re really focused on results and improving the company, and we’re excited about it. I mean, we’ve spent a lot of time on product meetings and engineering meetings and stuff. So, I think that’s misunderstood.
NOW WATCH: Tech Insider videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.