The landscape of mergers and acquisitions is littered with business flops, some catastrophic, highly visible disasters that were often hugely hyped before their eventual doom. Today marks the 15th anniversary of one such calamity when media giants AOL and Time Warner combined their businesses in what is usually described as the worst merger of all time… A few scant months after the deal closed, the dot com bubble burst and the economy went into recession. Advertising dollars evaporated, and AOL was forced to take a goodwill write-off of nearly $99 billion in 2002… AOL was also losing subscribers and subscription revenue. The total value of AOL stock subsequently went from $226 billion to about $20 billion.
Will Ferrell: Anchorman – The Legend of Ron Burgundy by Adam McKay, 2004
fortune.com, Rita Gunther McGrath, 10.01.2015