The Advertising Century

Stephen M. Case

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Stephen M. Case
(1958- )
America Online, Dulles, VA

His training was in marketing, but Case was fascinated with computers. Starting out as a low-level marketing assistant at P&G and Pepsi, Case moved to a small start-up offering dial-up services for Commodore computers. In 1985, after cutting deals to develop online services for Apple, Case started what would become in 1991 America Online. He envisioned a medium as omnipresent as TV -- if nothing else, his AOL diskettes would be. About 250 million diskettes and CD-ROMs were mailed to homes and distributed on planes and during ball games. Thirteen million users later, AOL's stock market valuation tops $100 billion and the company brings in $429 million in ad revenue alone.