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AOL revenue up as profit stays inline with prior year

The company's profits would have been about the same as in 2012 if not for a nearly $1 billion patent sale.

AOL had a strong 2013 on the revenue front, and although things looked dire on profits, some extra context helps to put the data into perspective.

During its 2013 fiscal year, AOL generated $2.3 billion in revenue, up 6 percent compared to the $2.2 billion it generated in 2012. And although the company was able to post a $92.4 million profit during the period, that was down 91 percent compared to the $1 billion it made in the prior year.

Comparing the two years, however, might be like comparing apples and oranges. In 2012, AOL had a $963 million gain on asset disposal, pushing its profits higher. Absent that and AOL's profits would have been more in line with those in 2013.

The good news for AOL was its advertising revenue in 2013, which jumped about $200 million. In the fourth quarter, alone, AOL's global ad revenue was up 23 percent.

One other note from AOL: the company attracted 120 million unique visitors each month to its Web properties in the fourth quarter. Its ad network had 207 million monthly unique visitors.