Major Shake-up as AOL Bids to Cut Bureaucracy

12 November 2004

Internet giant America Online is to undergo yet another restructure in a bid to improve efficiency and cut bureaucracy.

The Time Warner-owned company, which shed more than two million subscribers last year, also plans to axe 700 jobs at its headquarters in Virginia and cull three top executives.

AOL, the world's biggest ISP, will split into four divisions: Access, Audience, Digital Services and AOL Europe. Each division will be responsible for its own financial and operational decisions.

Chief executive Jonathan Miller says the changes are intended to make the company's decision making 'much crisper' and improve its sense of mission.

The company is facing stiff competition as its add-on services, including chat rooms, forums and media downloads, are available elsewhere at a lower price.

Says said Lorenzo Wood, of UK interactive consultancy Oyster Partners: "It's easy to find third party services which are as good as, if not better, than AOL."

Data sourced from BBC Online; additional content by WARC staff