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AOL Inc.

How Tim Armstrong steered AOL back to the future

How Tim Armstrong steered AOL back to the future

In 2009, when Tim Armstrong took over as chief executive of AOL Inc., he faced a daunting task: Turn around a company that had gone from an Internet pioneer to near obsolescence in less than a decade.

Six years later, Armstrong has not only revived AOL, he reinvented it, creating a thriving digital media company focused on online content, original videos and advertising technology. His efforts culminated this week when Verizon Communications Inc., the nation's No. 1 wireless carrier, agreed to buy AOL for $4.4 billion.

"It's pretty remarkable, honestly," said Andrew McNellis, an analyst at investment firm Evercore ISI in New York. "He took an asset that was in...