The day after Super Bowl XLV, Feb. 7, 2011, The New Yorker’s Ken Auletta described AOL’s deal to acquire The Huffington Post as “Tim Armstrong’s Hail Mary Pass.” That description was comically recalled Tuesday night by Arianna Huffington as she bid her official farewell to staff at a party hosted at Catch Roof. Huffington is moving on to Thrive, while her game-changing content company now belongs to Verizon.
“If I knew more about football, I would complete the [New Yorker] metaphor in some inspiring way,” joked Huffington. “But I know enough to know that whatever kind of pass it was, it worked. Appropriately, the deal was signed on Super Bowl Sunday, actually at the Super Bowl. It’s the only part of a Super Bowl I’ve ever paid attention to.”
“And now here we are celebrating a new chapter, both for me and for The Huffington Post, just as football season starts again,” she continued. “Sadly, I am as clueless about football now as I was then, but I am very up on how many hours a night Tom Brady sleeps and how that helps improve his stats—though I have no idea what those stats mean.”
“Tim believed in our global expansion from Day One. In fact, he and I announced it days after the acquisition when we were in London. And now HuffPost is set to launch HuffPost Mexico in two days [Thursday], building a bridge between our two countries at a time when Donald Trump wants to build a wall. So thank you Tim for proving right the prediction I made on the day of the acquisition, that HuffPost was stepping off a train and getting on a supersonic jet.”
Photo by: Damon Dahlen/The Huffington Post