Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?

AOL appoints new chief for Bebo

Company shifts Bebo's chief operating officer to the top slot as the social network is moved into the new AOL Ventures division.

Caroline McCarthy Former Staff writer, CNET News
Caroline McCarthy, a CNET News staff writer, is a downtown Manhattanite happily addicted to social-media tools and restaurant blogs. Her pre-CNET resume includes interning at an IT security firm and brewing cappuccinos.
Caroline McCarthy

AOL has promoted Stephane Panier to the role of president at social network Bebo, which it acquired last year for $850 million.

Panier, who joined AOL in January after six years at Google, had previously been serving as chief operating officer of Bebo.

Joanna Shields, who was CEO of Bebo when it was acquired, left AOL in May. Before she left, Shields was head of "People Networks," a new AOL division devoted to social networks. Last week, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong announced that People Networks would be nixed in a restructuring.

Bebo has been placed in a new division called AOL Ventures, and Panier will report to Jon Brod, executive vice president of AOL Ventures.

The $850 million Bebo buy did not turn out to be AOL's greatest success story, to say the least. Time Warner CEO Jeffrey Bewkes admitted that the company "may have overpaid," and much of Bebo's senior management soon began departing.