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Marriage from Hell: The Breakup of AOL Time Warner

About the Show

It didn't last a decade. After nearly 10 very difficult years, AOL finally left the house of Time Warner. Today, it is on its own again. The union, consummated at the height of the internet bubble, was touted as the "deal of the century" – the perfect marriage of old and new media. It is now considered the worst deal of all time. In 2003, three years after AOL announced it was buying Time Warner, we took an in-depth look at why a relationship with so much promise was on the rocks. Now, CNBC takes a look back with new insight from the men who created a momentous merger... and an epic debacle.

Web Extras

  • In the corporate world, bigger is often better. When it comes to legendary, industry-changing companies (think Microsoft), the more grandiose plans win out. The same is thought about mergers and acquisitions. Some mergers are so successful that we can’t remember a time when the two companies were distinct: Where would Disney be without Pixar, or J.P. Morgan without Chase?

    Here we look at the top 10 best, and worst, mergers of all time: The good, the bad, and the ugly.

  • Deal of the Century

    Former Time Warner CEO Gerald Levin speaks about the ill-fated AOL merger he brought to fruition.

  • Marriage From Hell: Gerald Levin Web Extra

    Today Gerald Levin, former CEO of AOL-Time Warner, lives a life completely removed from his former existence. When he stepped down, Levin said he wanted to bring the poetry back into his life. He pursued this desire by moving to Southern California, remarrying and embarking upon an entirely new career.

  • How much do you know about the economic bubbles of the past decade? Take the following quiz and find out.

Contact Marriage from Hell: The Breakup of AOL Time Warner

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