AOL Running Out of Options

AIMsmiley.jpgBloomberg reports that AOL’s move to New York this month may signal the last chance for Time Warner’s Internet division to convince investors it has a future in advertising:

“The latest shift away from dial-up Internet subscriptions follows a series of failures since AOL bought Time Warner in 2001, and almost $1 billion in online ad acquisitions in the past 18 months.” AOL Web sites lag behind Yahoo, Google, and Microsoft in U.S. visitors, and blogs buzz regularly with rumors of job cuts, the report said.

“AOL is a drain on management,” said Michael Morris, an analyst with UBS AG in New York. “I don’t think the direction that they’re going with AOL right now is ultimately going to drive growth above the average.” Essentially, more fodder to the idea that AOL’s $850 million Bebo acquisition didn’t impress a whole lot of people.