AOL CEO Says Focus Is Now on Executing Rather Than Acquiring

Tim Armstrong
Jeff Lipsky

“The people who are calling the Huffington Post deal a Hail Mary are people that don’t want to see AOL be successful,” Armstrong says. “For us, the Huffington Post is a first down.”

At a Citi investor conference, Tim Armstrong also predicts the online company's return to revenue growth and, later, profit growth.

NEW YORK - AOL chairman and CEO Tim Armstrong told an investor conference Thursday that the online company isn't currently planning any more major acquisitions or deals, but is starting 2012 with a focus on executing its strategy as a stand-alone company and creating things itself.

Speaking at the Citi Investment Research 2012 Entertainment, Media and Telecommunications Conference in San Francisco, Armstrong also said that AOL is "very close" to becoming a growth company in terms of revenue, which will later be followed by a return to profit growth. He also predicted gains in unique visitors. "I'm very excited about 2012," he said.

In a session that was webcast, Armstrong said recent acquisitions, such as the Huffington Post and TechCrunch, have worked out well and  "scaled really nicely." However, this year, "we will go back to being a build company," the AOL boss told the Citi crowd.

Investors have been looking for a financial turnaround at the Web company, which has under Armstrong focused on providing more content, including premium video content in partnership with big Hollywood names.


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