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How Time Warner slowly but surely split into a bunch of little parts

  • Time-Life Not nearly as big as the other parts, but people recognize the name, right? The book and music marketing arm of the company, named after the two magazines which made Time Inc. famous, was spun off in 2003 and had to start running a disclaimer that said ”not affiliated with Time Warner Inc. or Time Inc.” Sounds about right.
  • Time Warner Cable The first big chunk to fall, the cable company was spun off partly because it was seen as having more potential to grow under a structure different from that of a pure content company. The split, which took place over a four year period, was finalized in March 2009. (Conversely, Comcast in recent years has taken the opposite approach, buying out NBC Universal from General Electric to become a top-down cable and entertainment empire.)
  • AOL The digital arm of Time Warner, which was once so massive that AOL bought Time Warner in 2000, ultimately became a drag on both companies after it became clear that there weren’t enough 70-year-olds to keep the legacy AOL service at a high level of profitability forever. In December 2009, the company, whose value had declined significantly in the period that Time Warner owned it, was spun off to its own space on the stock market. It eventually made a pure-content play, which has recently brought it success.
  • Time Inc. While the magazine industry came first, it would not remain the key part of Time’s empire, and after a failed merger of some of the magazines with the Better Homes and Gardens-owning magazine chain Meredith, Time Warner announced it was spinning off all of its magazines into a single company on Wednesday.
  • Time Warner So, here’s what’s now left—the cable channels (including HBO, TNT, TBS and CNN), the film studios (New Line Cinema, Warner Bros.), and the other entertainment arms. So, really, it’s just Warner and the remains of Ted Turner’s corporate empire. Synergy doesn’t last forever, right?
March 6, 2013 // 23:28 // 1 year ago
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