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gnulaw (51.95)

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February 24, 2009 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: CBS , BBY , YHOO

LNUX trading volume continues down 90+% of average daily volume and on the day (Feb-24-2009) Bernanke calls a bottom and U.S. Stocks climb most in month .


The $64,000 question: Is Kauffman:Sourceforge as WOW:CompuServe?



1 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On February 24, 2009 at 6:26 PM, gnulaw (51.95) wrote:

"...In 1996, CEO Maury Cox launched the WOW! initiative within CompuServe. The objective was to create a new generation of consumer information services which could be built on the revenue models brought to the market by AOL and to offer consumers a new rich visual experience. The WOW! service would also implement a parental control technology so that parents could limit and monitor the online activities of their children. A key component of this was a 'white list' of web sites that had been vetted by a team of CompuServe editors to ensure that the sites had content appropriate for children. The WOW! team was designed to be a 'skunk works,' with its core marketing and technology teams housed at a location away from the CompuServe corporate headquarters. Most of the leadership and team, headed by Scott Kauffman formerly of Time Warner, was recruited from outside the company [emphasis added].

To fund WOW!, Cox convinced H&R Block that the equity capital market should be tapped through a public stock offering. Block agreed, and subsequently 20% of CompuServe was sold via an Initial Public Offering (IPO), raising nearly $200 million for the company.

WOW! was not successful. CompuServe's traditional customers were not enthusiastic about the new user interface. The battle for customers between AOL and CompuServe became one of handing customers back and forth, using free hours and other enticements. There were technical problems in both the WOW! software and the network (the thousands of new generation U.S. Robotics dialup modems deployed in the network would crash under high call volumes). For the first time in decades, CompuServe began losing money, and at a prodigious rate. An effort, codenamed 'Red-Dog', was initiated to convert CompuServe's long-time PDP-10 based technologies over to servers based on Intel x86 architectures and the Microsoft Windows NT operating system.

H&R Block was going through its own management changes at the same time. Henry Bloch retired as CEO, and his son, Tom Bloch, was named as his successor. When Tom Bloch resigned to become a public school teacher, he was replaced by Richard Brown, who had formerly been one of the top executives of Ameritech. Dick Brown soon left to take the job as CEO of EDS, and the H&R Block Board of Directors appointed Frank Salizzoni, a member of the HRB Board, to serve as CEO of H&R Block. It was during Salizzoni's tenure as CEO that H&R Block's Board of Directors made the decision to divest CompuServe. Maury Cox left the helm as CompuServe's CEO, to be replaced by Bob Massey. Massey had a short tenure in this role, and was relieved in 1997. Frank Salizzoni became the acting CEO of CompuServe from this time until its sale..." Source:


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