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AOL gets new Europe, international chiefs

Dana international - corrected

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AOL Europe has appointed its sixth boss in a year as it repositions itself as an advertising-supported portal business.

A retiring Philip Rowley is replaced by Dana Dunne, who most recently presided over Belgian telco Belgacom [see correction below]. He was also a leader of management consultants McKinsey and Co's telecoms practice.

Rowley himself was brought back from a non-executive chairman role to run the European business day-to-day when Carlo d'Asaro Biondo jumped ship in December, less than two months into his tenure.

One source at AOL said the new appointment was the last straw: "Apparently he's the ideal person for the role (as opposed to his five predecessors)."

"Your reporter can't take a sixth [European boss] so is off too."

AOL also parachuted its Indian CEO Maneesh Dhir into the role of international CEO, meaning he'll be Dunne's boss and in charge of non-US territories. Dhir takes over from Joe Redling, who was part of the exodus of senior executives in America in December. Dhir will run things from AOL's London offices.

That pre-Christmas clear out followed the installation of Ron Grant as AOL president. He said: "AOL is in a terrific position to grow internationally, and with Maneesh and Dana, we have a leadership team that can expand our global presence as an advertising-supported web company."

Plus ça change. ®

Correction

A reader contacted us to say Dana Dunne never "presided over" (as we wrote), or was "president of" (as AOL wrote in its press release) Belgacom.

We put the concerns to AOL, who confirmed a mix-up somewhere in the PR department had led to Dunne's CV being accidently slightly improved during the composition of the press release.

AOL apologised for the error, and said it would correct its own website to make it clear that Dunne was president of one of several divisions (reporting to the COO, who in turn reported to the CEO) at Belgacom, rather than of the whole company...which is something rather different.

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