AOL Time Warner (AOLTW) will name former USA Interactive Inc. executive, Jonathan Miller as chief executive officer (CEO) of its troubled AOL Internet unit as soon as Tuesday, according to press reports.
Miller, 45 years old and one of the first outsiders to join AOLTW in such a senior position, will be charged with turning around the ailing fortunes of AOL, hard hit by a weak online advertising market, according to a report in the online edition of The Wall Street Journal.
AOL has been through a number of executive changes. Robert Pittman, former AOLTW chief operating officer and acting interim head of the AOL division, left the company last month due in part to the mounting pressure placed upon him to jump-start the unit's growth. Pittman, who had been AOL CEO prior to the company's merger with Time Warner, had himself replaced AOL CEO Barry Schuler in April. Miller, as president of USA Information and Services, had worked closely with Barry Diller at USA Interactive until Diller sold USA's television and film units. Miller, who left the company in June with the stated intention of starting his own company, had been in discussions with AOL about the position for the past three months, the report said.
Miller has also worked for the National Basketball Association's cable operations, children's cable t.v. channel Nickelodeon and the Home Shopping Network. With his experience in television and e-commerce, Miller is expected to promote the sale of add-on services as a way of strengthening AOL's bottom line, the report said.