AOL Cutting Workforce By 10% Patch To Bare Brunt Of Layoffs


AOL has announced that it has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, a restructuring plan for Patch, the local news website, “The Patch restructuring plan and other Company restructuring actions are currently expected to include the reduction of approximately ten percent of the Company’s employee base, the substantial majority of which are at Patch,” AOL said.  CEO Tim Armstrong said on a conference call, that one-third of Patch’s sites are underperforming on revenue and traffic, according to CNN.  Patch was Co-Founded by Armstrong in 2007 with the intent of replacing local newspapers with on-line content.  It’s essentially a coordinated blogger site; local news shopping under one roof.  The problem with this model is it has yet to be successful.  Anyway involved in the world of advertising revenue would rather be part of a 900 page Fashion Issue of Vogue than a cyber-space dream, hoping against hope that people will bypass the other million websites and visit Patch.  It may never be successful because it’s virtually impossible to gain loyalty to a news agency other than proven entities like the Wall Street Journal, New York Times or CNN.  News is just news and can be obtained anywhere at anytime, something Armstrong and others haven’t yet figured out.  The internet is about trending, the next big thing.  This generation of cyber searches bores easily.  It’s the reason AOL was able to acquire Patch for a measly $7 million price tag when Armstrong became CEO in 2009.  He has since invested millions of dollars in the venture with little or no return on investment. It will eventually either be unloaded, highly unlikely, or shuttered; more likely.  Patch is a nice website with some nice content but at the end of the day, it’s just one of many and who cares?

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