Time Warner plans to to shed its AOL division by the end of the year, the company said today, spinning it off into a publicly traded firm, the Wall Street Journal reports. Many predicted the move when Time Warner tapped Google ad exec Tim Armstrong as AOL’s CEO, and amended its debt agreements to make the move possible.
“We believe that a separation will be the best outcome for both Time Warner and AOL,” said Time CEO Jeff Bewkes, who’s been on the job just 15 months. The move will allow Time to focus on its core film, television, and content-creation businesses. Time owns 95% of AOL, with Google owning the other 5%. Time will buy Google’s share before the public offering.