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Apr 24th 2014

MAKERS Goes Global With Launch In China

MAKERS, the first-of-its-kind multi-platform initiative from AOL, becomes a global platform today -- joining the ranks of The Huffington Post, TechCrunch and Engadget. MAKERS China, in partnership with Yang Lan, a broadcast journalist and founder of Sun Media Group – one of China's leading private media companies – highlights and celebrates ten trailblazing Chinese women. MAKERS aims to be the largest collection of women's stories ever assembled, and through this launch provides an opportunity for the brand to create new MAKERS stories while reaching hundreds of millions of new viewers.

Yang Lan first approached AOL about bringing MAKERS into her country, and now serves as the Executive Producer for MAKERS China. Responsible for helping select and produce all content, she worked closely with a diverse and accomplished board of advisors to select each MAKER. The stories of the ten Chinese MAKERS will be distributed on Her Village, Yang Lan's online destination for women. Next month, translations of these stories will be featured on MAKERS.com and MAKERS.cn.

Watch the story of the first global MAKER, Yang Lan today at http://www.MAKERS.com/China.

The Chinese MAKERS include:

  • Fu Ying: the serving vice Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China and the first female spokesperson in the history of the National People's Congress of China (NPC)
  • Li Yinhe: an acclaimed female sociologist in China, she is a well-known sexologist and an activist for LGBT rights
  • GuoJianmeib: the founder of mainland China's first public interest institution to offer legal support and service to underprivileged women
  • Dong Mingzhu: a powerful female entrepreneur of the Chinese manufacturing industry
  • Gong Li: the first Chinese actress to become widely known to the western public
  • Laura Cha Shih May-lung: the first woman deputy chair of the China Stock Exchange and the first person outside of mainland China to join the central government of China at the vice-ministerial rank
  • Hu-Shuli: well-known and distinguished Chinese financial journalist and business owner in the media industry
  • Yang Liping: celebrated dancer and choreographer, she revived and modernized ethnic dance, and also brought Chinese dance to western culture
  • Yan Geling: regarded as a groundbreaking and influential Chinese writer and playwright in the world's literary landscape
  • Li Yan: well-accomplished athlete and coach, she won the first-ever medal on short track speed skating for China at the 1992 Olympics and is the most decorated Chinese coach in a single Olympic game

Mar 25th 2014

MAKERS Celebrates Gloria Steinem's 80th Birthday

There's no simple way to celebrate an icon like Gloria Steinem.

For many of us, Gloria is the leader who embodies feminism, who pushed the women's movement into the mainstream, who voices so articulately what we feel in our hearts but can't yet communicate in words, and whose dedication to equality is something we should all at least attempt to model.

So for Gloria's 80th, one of the ways we're honoring the icon is by celebrating her accomplished life, from "What You Know" to "What You Didn't Know."

Click on the infographic to enlarge it.

Mar 3rd 2014

AOL Leads comScore Lifestyle Category

After a year of innovation and a commitment to creating world-class content for our female audience, we're thrilled to announce that AOL Lifestyle has reached the #1 spot in comScore's Lifestyle category. Ranking ahead of both Yahoo! Lifestyle Network and Meredith Digital with 33.1M UVs, the group jumped from "top five" to the Lifestyle category leader -- and continues to grow rapidly and deliver premium content and experiences to the 33M we reach monthly.

Under the leadership of Maureen Sullivan, President of AOL.com and Lifestyle brands, the dynamic portfolio now includes brands that focus on a wide array of topics, including inspiration, entrepreneurship, beauty, style, food, entertaining, weddings and home. A robust Guest Editor franchise and Lifestyle Contributor Network leverage high-profile experts and influential bloggers, and has resulted in continued traffic growth for the group. Additionally, AOL Lifestyle works closely with partners like P&G, Kraft and Unilever across brands to create custom and native integrations.

Coupled with the break-through traffic numbers and robust guest-editor franchise, the group has proven that online brands can also be highly-successful offline. In the past 12 months, we've witnessed:

  • MAKERS -- a landmark television and digital platform that aims to be the largest video collection of women's stories ever assembled -- has seen great success with 60 million video views since launch[1]. An exciting evolution of the platform, the brand hosted the likes of Gloria Steinem, Chelsea Handler, Sheryl Sandberg and beyond at the inaugural MAKERS Conference.
  • StyleList sites are the #1 destination for fashion, beauty and style, with more monthly UV's monthly than PopSugar Style, People Style Watch, Fashionista and Glamour sites. In 2013, hosted the first-ever Street Style Runway Show featuring fashion influencers.
  • Kitchen Daily engaged America's foodies by hosting the first and second America's Favorite Chef contests. The site also features a Kitchen Daily VIP experience, which includes My Recipe Box, an open utility for organizing recipes across formats, and a grocery list feature that makes grocery shopping easy.
  • Style Me Pretty is the ultimate wedding site for the style-obsessed bride, featuring notable expert in the wedding and design space, Abby Larson. The site receives thousands of real wedding submissions, boasts a collection of over 1.5M real wedding photos, and features the Little Black Book, a highly curated collection of wedding vendors.
  • The Guest Editor franchise for StyleList and Kitchen Daily continues to leverage popular and noteworthy industry experts and connects them with the sites' highly engaged audiences. Recent Guest Editors include Tim Gunn, Jessica Alba, Tory Burch, Rocco Dispirito, Eva Mendes and Michael Symon.
  • The Lifestyle Contributor Network includes a group of 250 hand-picked, influential bloggers across fashion, beauty, food, weddings and home. These contributors bring millennial readers to the AOL Lifestyle brands.

Building off this incredible momentum, AOL Lifestyle aims to continue the momentum and lead the pack as #1 in comScore's Lifestyle category. For MAKERS, we're already looking forward to six new one-hour documentaries that will air on PBS, the MAKERS@ inaugural class of 2014 and global expansion.


[1] AOL On

Oct 15th 2013

MAKERS@ Announces Key Corporate Partners for The MAKERS Conference

Today, we're excited to announce our first partners for MAKERS@: an invitation-only program that provides a platform for companies to celebrate and acknowledge their game-changing female employees. As the purpose of MAKERS is to celebrate the women who have made their mark on history over the last 50 years, the goal of the conference is to create change for women in the workplace over the next 50 years.

Through MAKERS@, these companies will receive access to the inaugural MAKERS Conference, a first-of-its-kind gathering of leaders and trailblazers across industries centered on women and work and setting an agenda for change in the workplace. The conference will take place from February 10-12, 2014 at the Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, California.

Our select group of partners include: American Express OPEN, AOL, BBDO, Edelman, Google, Hearst Corporation/Marie Claire magazine, Javelin Marketing Group, Microsoft, Ogilvy & Mather, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), Verizon, and founding partner Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.

The gathering will highlight the very best of our MAKERS' stories, creatively woven together with one on one interviews, fireside chats, lively panels, cutting edge case studies, and entertainment. We're thrilled to announce Kara Swisher, creator of the All Things D conference, as emcee. Sessions will also be led by groundbreaking "MAKERS" profiled on MAKERS.com together with celebrities, not-for-profit industry leaders and key policy-makers including Gloria Steinem, Sheryl Sandberg (COO, Facebook), Megan Smith (GoogleX), Wendy Clark (Coke), Bob Moritz (US Chairman and Senior Partner, PwC), Tim Armstrong (CEO, AOL), Michelle Kydd Lee (CAA Foundation), Linda Alvarado (Alvarado Construction), and many more.

Since our inception in February 2012 and the release of the documentary MAKERS: Women Who Make America earlier this year, we've honored exceptional women and their pioneering contributions to helping shape the world. With the very first MAKERS conference, we are encouraging partners to continue our mission of empowering and honoring tomorrow's innovative leaders.

Full announcement here; For more information on MAKERS@, visit http://www.makers.com/conference and follow @MAKERSwomen on Twitter and Facebook at Facebook.com/makerswomen.

Oct 1st 2013

Leadership Changes Reflect AOL's Deep Roster of Talent

There are many reasons to be excited about our prospects as a company, but perhaps none greater than the level of talent we have at AOL across the board.

With that said, I'm excited to announce two changes within our leadership structure as we head into the final quarter of the year:

  • Maureen Sullivan will be taking over the leadership of AOL Homepage, effective immediately. You all know the tremendous work underway to revitalize AOL.com, and I'm excited to have Maureen take the helm at such a pivotal time. She is a tremendous brand builder and a results-oriented executive.
    In overseeing our Women's and Lifestyle Group, she has led the development and growth of the MAKERS brand as a global digital platform for documenting and celebrating the stories of extraordinary women. In addition, Maureen has led a reinvention of our Lifestyle group, developing unique brands covering weddings, food and style. She has generated great momentum across the board for the entire group this year evidenced by StyleList topping its category for eight consecutive months.

    She will continue to oversee the Women's and Lifestyle Group, as well.
  • As we continue to invest and grow our international footprint, Graham Moysey will take on the new role of Head of International and relocate from Toronto to our London office. Graham was appointed Head of International for the O&O business earlier this year. In his new role, he will oversee all international business for AOL with a dual reporting structure to me (for AOL Brands) and to Bob Lord (for AOL Networks). He will also partner with Bud on the Subscription business outside the U.S.
    During his tenure at AOL, Graham has illustrated the ability to collaborate across borders and across a variety of business units, and we are confident he will bring that spirit to his new role. Graham will be supported by the strong leadership team we have in place in our offices in Europe as well as in Tel Aviv, Bangalore and Tokyo.

Please join me in congratulating Maureen and Graham on their new roles.

For updates and the latest news from AOL, follow @AOLPR on Twitter.

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