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Pittman steps down as head of AOL Time Warner

Thursday, July 18, 2002

NEW YORK (AP) -- Bob Pittman is stepping down as the chief operating officer of AOL Time Warner as part of a management shake-up, the company announced Thursday.

The company's stock has been under heavy pressure in recent months over concerns that the company's flagship AOL online service is faltering. Pittman is a veteran of the AOL side of the company.

As part of the shakeup, two top executives from the Time Warner side of the company were elevated: HBO chairman Jeff Bewkes will head up the company's entertainment and networks businesses, and Time Inc. chairman Don Logan will lead a media and communications group.

The announcement comes after weeks of speculation that Pittman had been unhappy with pressures from senior management at AOL Time Warner. Pittman had been dispatched in April to rescue the AOL division.

Pittman had been widely associated with lofty promises for growth that the company made to investors shortly after the merger of AOL and Time Warner was announced in early 2000.

The company never fulfilled those promises, and angered investors by sticking to those targets long after most observers stopped believing them.

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