Two years ago, Tim Armstrong was a semi-famous advertising executive from the world’s most successful advertising company, Google. Now he’s the CEO of AOL, a company struggling through an epic turnaround/reinvention.
So you COULD argue that Tim Armstrong’s weirdest investment is the one he’s making with his time and career, putting all his chips on a fading brand, AOL.
But sorry, Tim’s wacky investments have to be the money he’s put into two professional sports.
Did you know that Tim is the owner of the National Lacrosse League team Boston Blazers? We didn’t know there even was a National Lacrosse League.
Even more bizarre, Tim has big money in the off-brand professional football league of the moment – the UFL. Looking at this investment – and the way he USFL, XFL, and AFL flopped in the past three decades – we can only hope Tim’s tax attorney advised him that there would be an advantage in losing some money. Otherwise, these big bets really make you kind of wonder about Tim’s business sense.
Tim Amstrong inspires loyalty with charisma
Google Title: President of the Americas Operations
AOL Title: CEOIf people didn't like working for Tim, AOL wouldn't be crawling with Googlers doing their second tour of duty with him.
The biggest knock on Tim's performance at Google was that he wasn't always tough enough to make unpleasant decisions and give people bad news.
That's changed at AOL, a source tells us: 'The tough things he was unable to do at Google (fire a lot of people, demote a bunch of people) he's been able to do at AOL.'
That hasn't cost him his popularity, though. 'The troops LOVE him.'
It's not clear he has a clear vision for AOL. That seems like a major problem, but a source puts it: 'I don't have a vision for that company. I don't know who does.'
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Meet The Googlers Running AOL