America Online said it would reorganize its management structure, consolidating all operations into three brand groups: AOL Interactive Services, CompuServe Interactive Services and AOL Studios. AOL Networks President Robert Pittman will become president-chief operating officer of AOL with all three divisions reporting to him. Ted Leonsis remains president-CEO of AOL Studios, overseeing creation and development of online content.
In a separate announcement, AOL said it will raise its flat-rate monthly fee to $21.95 per month, from $19.95. Industry watchers said the increase could spark an Internet-wide fee increase.
NBC, Microsoft, Dow Jones debut service
NBC, Microsoft Corp. and Dow Jones & Co. last week launched CNBC/Dow Jones Business Video (www.cnbcdowjones.com). The site, previously called MSNBC Business Video, features live video and audio coverage of financial news, trends and events. It will be offered as a value-added service to subscribers of the Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition.
GeoCities launches House-Warming
GeoCities last week launched House-Warming, a direct marketing program for its advertisers that offers virtual coupons, gift certificates, product samples and other gifts to new "homesteaders" on the site (www.geocities.com). Flagship sponsors of the House-Warming program include CompuServe, Fuji Photo Film USA, Kayser-Roth and the Student Advantage Network.
In other news
America Online is expected to announce today that it will add E! Online (www.eonline.com) to its entertainment channel, giving E! an anchor tenant spot equal with its own AOL Studios' creation, Entertainment Assylum. . . . EarthLink Network and Sprint Corp. have allied to create a single Internet access service. Sprint's 130,000 Internet Passport customers will join EarthLink for a total of 600,000 subscribers. Sprint has agreed to take a minority investment in EarthLink as part of the deal.