AOL and investment holding company create joint venture to run Patch

Is AOL’s long nightmare involving its local news sites coming to an end? Yesterday afternoon AOL announced that it had entered into a joint venture with Hale Global, an investment holding company, to run Patch as a joint venture.

AOL_Canv_Logo_1C_Swag_Rd_RGBThe move all but guarantees that the next move involving Patch will be the selling of the venture to another entity – either a media company, or more likely a private equity firm.

The press release issued by AOL describes Hale Global as “an investment holding company with a 13-year track record as a buyer and partner of choice for growth-technology special situations, including underperforming divestitures from corporate parents.” (No emphasis on the “underperforming” part, but there should have been.)

“Along with AOL, we are committed to taking the necessary steps to ensure Patch remains a vibrant part of the community,” said Charles Hale, CEO of Hale Global. “We are impressed by the commitments from Patch and AOL to serve communities and advertisers and look forward to working together to achieve our shared long-term vision.”

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