• Apr. 8, 2014, 4:00 PM
    • Smart bargain hunting or catching a falling knife? After being bludgeoned almost ceaselessly over the last couple of weeks, many high-beta tech stocks are closing the day with sizable gains.
    • The rebound comes on a day when hedge fund Coatue Management announced plans to return over $2B to investors following a 9% March decline caused by tech stock losses.  It also comes as several tech giants, including Apple, Microsoft, H-P, and IBM, finish the day near breakeven, or with modest losses.
    • Leading U.S. Internet gainers: LNKD +6.2%. P +6%. ZU +5%. SALE +7.2%. SSTK +6%. AOL +4.6%.
    • Chinese Internet gainers: EJ +9.1%. WBAI +8.9%. QIHU +7.9%. ATHM +8.1%. YY +6.8%. SFUN +8.7%. GOMO +9.8%. Ctrip and Qunar were among the sector's biggest gainers following M&A rumors.
    • Others: FSLR +7%. NMBL +6.2%. NPTN +5.9%. PANW +5.5%. EGHT +5.4%. RFMD +4.9%. QIWI +4.9%. CRUS +4.3%. RALY +5.5%.
    | Apr. 8, 2014, 4:00 PM | 4 Comments
  • Apr. 7, 2014, 10:04 AM
    • Curtis Brown, AOL's (AOL -2.2%) CTO since 2010, is leaving the company following a transition period. He'll be replaced by William Pence, who recently resigned as WebMD's CTO.
    • AOL has seen plenty of executive changes over the last 12 months. Last week, the company announced it's hiring ex-Johnson & Johnson exec Kim Kadlec to head its content partnership efforts.
    | Apr. 7, 2014, 10:04 AM
  • Mar. 26, 2014, 12:07 PM
    • Jefferies (Buy, $66 PT) declares AOL's (AOL +5.6%) recent selloff a buying opportunity, and argues the long-term potential of AOL Networks (the company's online ad unit) is underappreciated.
    • AOL's ad sales, boosted by the acquisition, rose 23% Y/Y in Q4 to $507M. The company has been investing heavily to grab a larger chunk of the growing programmatic and online video ad markets.
    • Yesterday, CEO Tim Armstrong announced AOL plans to mesh its various ad tech platforms (inc. into an integrated solution called AOL ONE.
    | Mar. 26, 2014, 12:07 PM
  • Feb. 10, 2014, 11:44 AM
    • AOL (AOL -3.3%) is selling off after CEO Tim Armstrong triggered an employee backlash and media firestorm by delaying his company's matching 401(k) contributions to the end of each calendar year, and blaming it in part on high health care costs for two "distressed babies" born to employee families.
    • Armstrong has backtracked on the 401(k) change and apologized for his remarks. The controversy arrives just six months after Armstrong was forced to apologize for firing a Patch employee on the spot for taking video of a layoff announcement.
    • AOL sold off last Thursday following its Q4 report. Though the company beat estimates, it also reported a 2% Y/Y drop in search ad revenue (3% growth was seen in Q3), and a 10% drop in subscription (dial-up ISP) revenue. BofA/Merrill and Macquarie cut shares to Neutral on Friday; the former cited a disappointing EBITDA forecast.
    | Feb. 10, 2014, 11:44 AM
  • Feb. 7, 2014, 9:49 AM
    • Sony (SNE +0.8%) has been upgraded to Buy by Jefferies a day after announcing (along with its FQ3 results) the sale of its PC unit, and plans to spin off its TV ops.
    • iRobot (IRBT -3.2%) has been cut to Underweight by JPMorgan a day after rallying in response to a Q4 beat and mixed guidance.
    • Rackspace (RAX +2.3%) and Red Hat (RHT +2%) have been started at Outperform by Credit Suisse. Rackspace reports on Monday.
    • AOL (AOL -2.4%) has been cut to Neutral by BofA/Merrill and Macquarie following yesterday's Q4 beat.
    • Teradata (TDC -2%) has been cut to Underweight by Morgan Stanley a day after beating Q4 estimates and offering soft EPS guidance.
    • Mobile TeleSystems (MBT +1.1%) has been upgraded to Overweight, and Vimpelcom (VIP +0.5%) to Equal Weight, by Barclays. Credit Suisse upgraded MTS on Wednesday.
    • SBA (SBAC -1.1%) has been cut to Neutral by Citi. Q4 results arrive on Feb. 26.
    • 21Vianet (VNET -0.3%) has been cut to Neutral by Credit Suisse.
    | Feb. 7, 2014, 9:49 AM | 7 Comments
  • Feb. 6, 2014, 7:03 AM
    • AOL Inc. (AOL): Q4 EPS of $0.43 beats by $0.02.
    • Revenue of $679M (+13.3% Y/Y) beats by $23.2M.
    | Feb. 6, 2014, 7:03 AM
  • Feb. 6, 2014, 12:05 AM
  • Feb. 5, 2014, 5:30 PM
    | Feb. 5, 2014, 5:30 PM | 1 Comment
  • Feb. 4, 2014, 11:06 AM
    • Iiridian Asset Management, a firm that claims to target mid-cap companies "undergoing significant corporate change," has disclosed a 9.3% passive stake in AOL (AOL +5.7%).
    • Shares are adding to the gains they saw yesterday in response to a Needham PT hike, and are now up 7.6% on the week. Q4 results arrive on Thursday morning.
    | Feb. 4, 2014, 11:06 AM | 1 Comment
  • Feb. 3, 2014, 11:13 AM
    • Citing recent comments from management at a competitor's conference, Needham's Laura Martin has upped her AOL (AOL +6%) PT to $57 from $46 ahead of the company's Thursday Q4 report.
    • Martin has also raised her Q4 revenue and EPS forecasts to $647M and $0.59, though that still leaves them below a consensus of $655.2M and $0.60, and her 2014 revenue and EPS estimates to $2.516B and $2.46 (consensus is at $2.52B and $2.42).
    • Though off its mid-January highs (achieved following the Patch deal), AOL remains well above where it traded going into November's Q3 report.
    | Feb. 3, 2014, 11:13 AM
  • Jan. 23, 2014, 9:29 AM
    • AOL has bought Gravity, developer of a Web content distribution platform that places personalized links on partner sites to "recommended' articles elsewhere on the Internet, as well as "Sponsored Stories" from advertisers.
    • AOL is paying $83M up-front, and $12M deferred over the next two years. As part of the deal, the company is obtaining $12M in net operating losses.
    • Gravity allows AOL to deliver personalized content recommendations to users visiting its Web properties, as well as those on its 2K-strong publisher network. Thus, Gravity could be used to funnel traffic from AOL to partner sites, and vice versa.
    • Gravity also stands to increases the exposure of AOL's ad business to a growing market for "sponsored" content and native advertising.
    • AOL bought video ad tech platform/network for $405M last August.
    | Jan. 23, 2014, 9:29 AM | 1 Comment
  • Jan. 16, 2014, 9:54 AM
    • H-P (HPQ +2.9%) has been upgraded to Buy by BofA/Merrill. Shares are again making new 52-week highs.
    • Alcatel-Lucent (ALU -2.5%) has been cut to Equal Weight by Evercore ahead of its Feb. 6 Q4 report.
    • Micron (MU) has been upgraded to Outperform by JMP. The DRAM/NAND giant received three bullish sell-side calls last Friday, shortly after the company posted a strong FQ1 beat.
    • VMware (VMW +2.7%) has been upgraded to Buy by Citi ahead of its Jan. 28 Q4 report.
    • SunPower (SPWR +3.4%) has been started at Overweight by Oppenheimer. Q4 results are due on Feb. 12.
    • AOL (AOL +4.1%) has been upgraded to Buy by CRT Capital following news it's handing off Patch to a JV.
    • NetSuite (N +1.1%) has been upgraded to Outperform by FBR.
    • Gartner (IT +1.6%) has been upgraded to Buy by Goldman.
    • Emulex (ELX +4.1%) has received a two-notch upgrade to Buy from BofA/Merrill.
    • Verint (VRNT +3.6%) has been upgraded to Outperform by FBR.
    • Vipshop (VIPS +3.1%) has been started at Buy by BofA/Merrill.
    | Jan. 16, 2014, 9:54 AM
  • Jan. 15, 2014, 4:11 PM
    • AOL is forming a JV with investment firm Hale Global that will own its troubled Patch local news unit. AOL will have a minority stake in the venture, which will be operated by Hale. (PR)
    • Patch's future has been up in the air for a while, as AOL struggled to turn a profit on a business (local news/ad sales) for which economies of scale are hard to come by. 40% of Patch's workforce was laid off last summer, and hundreds of Patch sites shut down.
    • AOL/Hale state that going forward, Patch will focus on providing a "mobile-first experience with social integration," self-service ad tools, and location-targeted ad products, among other things.
    • The deal comes shortly after AOL unloaded ancient media player Winamp and streaming radio site Shoutcast.
    | Jan. 15, 2014, 4:11 PM | 6 Comments
  • Jan. 6, 2014, 3:38 PM
    • The talks took place last year in H2, but ended as BusinessInsider was looking for something far more lucrative than the $100M-$150M AOL had in mind. Bubble? BI is barely profitable and has revenue of less than $20M per year.
    • AOL, however, has its eye on web traffic, and BI gets more of it than traditional media players like the FT (though less than the WSJ).
    • “We love the folks at AOL, and we have enjoyed the many conversations we have had with them over the years. But what we talk about is private,” says BI chief Henry Blodget.
    • From 2011: AOL buys Huffington Post for $315M.
    | Jan. 6, 2014, 3:38 PM | 2 Comments
  • Jan. 2, 2014, 6:55 PM
    • Following weeks of reports indicating a sale was close, AOL has sold media player Winamp and Internet radio site Shoutcast to Belgian online radio station aggregator Radionomy.
    • With both platforms having shed many users since their glory days, AOL likely isn't receiving a huge sum from Radionomy. The company has been trying to either streamline or rid itself of underperforming assets.
    | Jan. 2, 2014, 6:55 PM
  • Jan. 2, 2014, 7:24 AM
    • "We expect U.S. online video advertising will increase to $8.1 billion by 2016, a 37% compound annual growth rate," says analyst Ken Sena, noting his team's estimates are well above those of Magna Global, which sees $6.1B, or a 24% CAGR. "Video content is becoming more about immediacy and on-demand, the seconds-long clip formats of Vine and Instagram have unleashed a new wave of UGC, and YouTube steamrolls on for most everything video."
    • Looking at Twitter (TWTR) and assuming it can garner 5% of this action, Sena says 17% of his team's 2016 $6B revenue estimate would consist of video.
    • "Moreover, by examining other online video providers too through the framework of 1) control of the feed, 2) programmatic ad delivery across multiple devices, and 3) access to premium content, we see Google (GOOG), Twitter and Facebook (FB) as best positioned," he says. "What places Twitter in such strong company is the combination of its immediacy and the support that it is receiving from the traditional TV industry."
    • PTs: Twitter to $70 from $52, Yahoo (YHOO) to $40 from $33, AOL to $44 from $40, Google to $1,290 from $1,250, Amazon (AMZN) to $480 from $450.
    | Jan. 2, 2014, 7:24 AM | 4 Comments
Company Description
AOL Inc is a media technology company that provides internet content with brands, products and services that it offers to consumers, advertisers, publishers and subscribers.
Sector: Technology
Industry: Internet Information Providers
Country: United States