AOL hires Microsoft's Alex Gounares as CTO

Sources say Gounare's departure was announced internally Friday at Microsoft, where he was CTO for the Online Services division.

Kara Swisher

According to sources close to the situation, AOL has hired Alex Gounares (pictured here) as its chief technology officer.

Gounare's departure was announced internally at Microsoft today, where he is corporate vice president of Advertising Research and Development and CTO for the software giant's Online Services division.

According to his bio at Microsoft, Gounares "was the corporate vice president for Corporate Strategy, where he was responsible for helping set the overall strategic direction for the company. Before that, Gounares spent three years as the technology assistant to Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, and he also was responsible for helping formulate and drive the technical strategy for the company."

Sources said he will be moving back east to take on the job at AOL. He will replace Ted Cahall, who left AOL in late January.