Three senior executives are leaving AOL following a recent shake-up that brought in a veteran NBC executive as the online company’s new chief executive, two people familiar with the matter said Friday.
The executives are Joe Redling, who is chairman and chief executive of AOL International, Jim Bankoff, executive vice president for consumer and publisher services, and John Buckley, executive vice president for corporate communications.
The company had no official comment. The people who confirmed the changes spoke on condition of anonymity because they involved personnel matters not yet announced.
Over the past two years, the company has been giving away more of its services to drive traffic to its Web sites and boost online advertising dollars. In August, AOL accelerated the transition by deciding to give away AOL.com e-mail addresses and software once reserved for paying customers.
In a September reorganization, then-Chief Executive Jonathan Miller named Redling to oversee AOL’s international presence, its mobile services and its relationship with free and paying customers. Redling had headed AOL’s Internet access business, a unit abolished as the entire company shifted its focus toward drawing eyeballs to ad-supported Web sites.
But less than two months later, AOL parent Time Warner Inc. lured Randy Falco, NBC Universal Television Group’s president and chief operating officer, to run AOL LLC, pushing out Miller. Time Warner executives had been supportive of Miller’s efforts to set AOL on a new course, but wanted someone with operational experience to execute the plan.
Several AOL executives have contractual clauses allowing them to leave when senior management changes, triggering the departures of Redling, Bankoff and Buckley, according to the people familiar with the decisions.
Other executives are planning to stay for now, including Kevin Conroy, executive vice president for AOL products, marketing and distribution, and Michael Kelly, president of Media Networks, the unit in charge of advertising.
But the three departing senior executives will take with them the experience they had realigning the company for the broadband era. Bankoff, for instance, was a key figure in developing video, social-networking and other content to draw traffic.
Earlier in the week, Carlo d’Asaro Biondo, the chief executive of AOL’s European operations, announced plans to leave after less than two months at the helm to take another job. John McKinley, acting chief technology officer, has previously said he would leave.
The people said the changes were voluntary and unrelated to the layoffs of about 450 workers at AOL’s Dulles, Va., headquarters on Wednesday.
PaidContent reported the departures on its Web site Friday.