AOL will this week unveil the early stages of a plan to become the Internet's largest provider of original content within two years. As the company prepares to spin off from Time Warner by the end of the year, Tim Armstrong, AOL chief executive and a former Google executive, is trying to identify market areas in which it could dominate after falling behind rivals Google, Yahoo and Microsoft.
It ranked fourth behind Google, Yahoo and Microsoft in traffic in May, attracting 107m unique visitors in the US to its sites, according to comScore. Google attracted 157 million visitors.
"There is going to be a very broad content economy in the future and we'd like AOL to be at the centre of it," Armstrong told the Financial Times.
AOL's full-year 2008 revenue was $4.2bn, compared with Google's $21.8bn and Yahoo's $5.4bn.
"There is going to be a very broad content economy in the future and we'd like AOL to be at the centre of it," Armstrong told the Financial Times. "The one underinvested place on the internet from a technology and structured data perspective is content."