NEWS3 March 2010

AOL’s UK-based research team take voluntary redundancy

People UK

UK— All four members of AOL’s UK-based European research team are set to leave the internet company, having accepted voluntary redundancy as part of a corporate-wide cost reduction exercise.

Andrew Bradford, director of insight and strategy, Scott Fleming, head of research and studies, and media research executive Maria Pelekanos are scheduled to depart in the coming weeks. Zosia Rich, European research manager for AOL Advertising, has already left.

Sources say AOL offered “generous” terms with no veto on who could or couldn’t apply for the voluntary redundancy programme – which goes some way to explaining the wholesale departure of research personnel.

AOL had not returned calls seeking comment at the time of publication. Sources say the company will maintain a slimmed-down research capability, with one contact reporting that there is currently one position open for a researcher and strategist.

The voluntary redundancy programme was introduced in December as part of efforts by AOL to reduce costs following its spin-off from Time Warner. The company is looking to cut one-third of its global workforce of 6,900 people, saving around $300m annually.