AOL leader Tim Armstrong denied an investigation that the company planned to market off its top tech blogs, including Engadget and TechCrunch. Armstrong told Reuters and Ad Age that this report by PandoDaily was false – “100 percent untrue,” Armstrong said of the rumors, to Reuters. “We are planning to spend money on those properties, not sell them,” Armstrong told Ad Age, although he admitted he held discussions with other companies for investment opportunities. Armstrong added that AOL was leaning toward committing to the blogs itself, however.
First-quarter net income rose to $21 million, while revenue fell 4 percent to $529.4 million. However, send out domestic ad-display business fell slightly, to $119 million from $120 million the prior year. Total global advertising revenue grew Five percent, to $330 million.
“I wasn’t happy with the domestic display throughout the first quarter,” Armstrong said on the business call, as outlined by Reuters. “A great deal of it turned out a sales strategy off tune.” Investors will definitely be happy with Armstrong’s decision to go back the $1 billion it’ll receive from selling or licensing 800 patents to Microsoft. Microsoft then turned around and licensed many to Facebook, for $550 million.
The existing quarter might find the results of AOL’s latest effort, a web based video network, called AOL ON, such as 14 different channels covering the parts of entertainment, style, tech, food, business, travel, and health.
Update: Inside a Wednesday afternoon post, TechCrunch backed Armstrong’s story. Armstrong “and a gaggle of Aol folks decided it could be wise to turn TC, Engadget and some other tech properties (including some not yet been acquired) right into a separate company/entity, worth $200 million,” TechCrunch wrote. “Eventually, as Armstrong alludes to in [the] Ad Age article, the master plan was scrapped.”
TechCrunch procedes criticize PandoDaily, as well as its editor Sarah Lacy, who utilized to write for TechCrunch. “We figure this story got skewed because PandoDaily is going through its troubles, and searching for the target to project its drama onto; Sometimes hesitant to seem weak allows you to seem weak,” TechCrunch snarked.