Time Warner Inc's AOL Internet unit said on Thursday it has appointed former Google Inc executive Jeff Levick as president of global advertising and strategy, overseeing its Platform-A advertising sales business.
Levick, who was previously vice president of industry development and marketing at Google, will report to AOL Chief Executive Tim Armstrong who joined from Google on April 1.
The appointment of Levick means Greg Coleman, president of Platform-A since February, will be leaving the company.
Wall Street is closely watching Time Warner for news of move to separate the struggling Internet unit that saw revenue drop 23 percent last quarter.
Time Warner Chief Executive Jeffrey Bewkes has said on several occasions in recent months that he is looking at the best way to restructure AOL's ownership.
There has long been speculation that AOL could be combined with another Internet company like Yahoo Inc or Microsoft's Internet operations.
But on Wednesday Time Warner indicated in a regulatory filing that it is now leaning toward spinning off the company to its shareholders though it said a final decision had not been made.
Earlier this month it received approval from some bondholders to amend a covenant to allow a change in ownership of AOL.
Bewkes said on a conference call that an announcement about AOL's future would be made very soon and that it was too early for Armstrong to give details of his plans for the company.
In 2001 AOL and Time Warner merged in one of the most troubled mergers in U.S. corporate history.
AOL, which was once how most people found their way onto the Internet, has since been left behind as a relic as cable and phone companies pick off subscribers with faster speeds than its dial-up service.
Meanwhile, AOL has been unable to build on its Web pioneer status in the online advertising sector as Google and others have swooped in to dominate. Last quarter its advertising sales shrunk 20 percent.
(Reporting by Yinka Adegoke; Editing by Brian Moss)