Speaking for an audience of 1,300 investment bankers and media insiders at the two-day Tech 2000 conference, the president of interactive properties called the company's critics "boogeymen" who failed to see that AOL would be "uniquely positioned to lead the new Internet revolution."
Robertson Stephens, which is sponsoring the conference, today became the latest brokerage firm to recommend AOL's stock as a good buy, Leonsis told the audience. His comments came as investors are warming to the deal after initial misgivings.
Leonsis said that once Wall Street understands the merger better, investors will look more favorably upon the alliance. "It's hard for them to understand the deal right now," he said.
He added that he is confident the deal will be approved before the end of the year.