Former internet heavyweight AOL announced its first quarterly revenue growth in 8 years on Friday. Fourth quarter sales rose 3.9 percent to $599.5 million spurred by a 12.9 percent increase of advertising revenues. AOL’s stock price jumped more than 7 percent on Friday, as the company continues its climb back to relevance. AOL’s stock has surged 115 percent over the past 12 months, making it one of the hottest tech stocks of the past year.
The latest results mark a milestone in CEO Tim Armstrong’s quest to transform his company from an internet service provider into a digital media company. Since AOL’s spin-off from Time Warner in 2009, the company had acquired TechCrunch and The Huffington Post to re-position itself as an ad-selling provider of premium online content.
The above chart nicely illustrates the slow progress AOL has made in the past 2 years.