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AOL picks Susan Lyne to head up its brands, including TechCrunch

The AOL logo is seen on the outside of the building housing the companies corporate headquarters in New York May 28, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jac
The AOL logo is seen on the outside of the building housing the companies corporate headquarters in New York May 28, 2009. REUTERS/Lucas Jac

(Reuters) - AOL Inc appointed board director Susan Lyne on Thursday to head up its portfolio of brands, including TechCrunch and Mapquest.

Lyne, who is vice chairman of the online clothing flash sale site Gilt.com, will leave her position on the AOL board to oversee advertising and publisher relationships and to grow traffic as the Brand Group CEO.

Arianna Huffington, whose Huffington Post website falls under the Brand Group, will continue to report to AOL Chief Executive Tim Armstrong.

A well known media executive, Lyne was the former chief executive of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and president of ABC Entertainment. AOL plans to fill her spot on the board after she steps down, a spokeswoman said.

In a statement, AOL said its Chief Operating Officer Arthur Minson, who is responsible for all AOL's business units - the Brand Group, AOL Networks and Membership Group - "will stay with the company for a transition period."

An AOL spokeswoman declined to say if or when Minson was leaving the company.

"I have decided to stay and continue to work closely with Tim during this transition period," Minson said in a statement.

AOL has tapped its board members for key executive roles before. Karen Dykstra was appointed Chief Financial Officer last year after serving on the AOL board from 2009 until 2012.

(Reporting by Jennifer Saba in New York; Editing by Bernadette Baum)

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