Steve Case

Steve Case came into this world in 1958. He had an entrepreneurial spirit, even when he was a very young boy. By doing things like running limejuice stand with his brother. In his teen years, he and his brother formed a company called, “ Case Enterprises.” This was a small company that sold miscellaneous items. He also generated small companies like giving people rides back and forth to the airport. He also made up baskets of fruit and sold them.

He attended Williams College and received an undergraduate degree in political sciences. He started his career with Procter Gamble. Here his job was to develop different kinds of beauty and health products. In the early 1980’s he went to Pizza Hut. Here he developed new pizzas for the chain. Before people even started having a lot of personal computers in their homes he was already going online. He started working for Control Video, an online service for Atari users. When the company went bankrupt, he was on the outlook for a new venture.

Soon after American Online (AOL) was born. It was launched in 1989. It offered games, real time chat and e-mail. In 1992 he took the firm public was named CEO and president .By 1994 subscribers to AOL was over one million. By 1995 he took the firm internationally. To Germany, subscribers soon grew to over 3 million. Soon he was also in United Kingdom, Canada and France. Today there are over thirty million subscribers to AOL.

AOL forged a deal with the Chicago Tribune. Chicago Tribune to develop an online information service consisting mainly of local news for residents of Chicago and surrounding areas. Chicago Tribune paid AOL five million dollars for a minority stake in AOL.

It is said that the success of AOL all rests on him. It was his diligence and values that he put into AOL that has took it to the extremes that it has. He could have sold the company early on and made millions but that was not what he saw for the future of AOL. He was relentless in the fact of wanting to keep rebuilding the company to be the best that it could be. Even though he is known to have a healthy ego, he has never let that affect his business choices. He hires only the best creative people that are right for the company.

After the company merged with Time Warner, the market value of the company fell over 50 million dollars; this was surprising to him and other analysts. He took a lot of heat over this downfall. By the time he stepped down nearly 200 million worth of shareholder value in AOL Time Warner had been lost. Some people said that they should bring him back on board to bring the company back to profits. But he refused. After leaving the company he spent most of his time concerned with the philanthropic efforts of the Case Foundation.

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