The following is an excerpt from Julianne Pepitone | May 9, 2012 | cnn.com |
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — AOL will give 100% of the proceeds from its $1 billion patent sale “directly back to shareholders,” CEO Tim Armstrong said Wednesday, but the details are still being worked out.
AOL (AOL) announced last month that it had agreed to sell about 925 patents to Microsoft (MSFT, Fortune 500) for $1.1 billion in cash. AOL also granted a non-exclusive license to Microsoft for its remaining patents. A few weeks later, Facebook announced plans to will buy 625 of those patents from Microsoft for $550 million.
“We have not made the final decision,” AOL CFO Artie Minson said about AOL’s plans for distributing the cash. AOL has already bought back 15 million shares and has to be careful not to “trigger a change in control at the company” by buying more, he said.
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