Thursday, October 13, 2011


According to Reuters AOL Inc CEO Tim Armstrong has been meeting with top shareholders in the past couple of weeks to push the idea of a sale to Yahoo Inc that could wring up to $1.5 billion of cost savings, according to sources with knowledge of the discussions. "The focus in the meeting has gone from a year ago of being around the fundamentals to now being how could you carve this up, what are separate assets worth, are there ways to sell off the business to extract value from them," said a top 20 AOL shareholder who attended one of the meetings.

Armstrong said a merger between AOL and Yahoo could wring out $1 billion to $1.5 billion in savings from overlapping data centers and duplicate news sites, such as sports, entertainment and finance, according to another major shareholder who met with Armstrong.

He is pushing the notion that a combination with Yahoo would appease ad agencies looking for more efficient buys with a bigger audience, said the two shareholders.

They said they liked the idea of a merger with Yahoo but it remains to be seen if Armstrong can pull it off.

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