scorecardresearch Skip to main content

AOL cofounder to talk ‘Third Wave’ of Internet business

Steve Case.Jim Young/REUTERS/file 2005

Steve Case, who earned fame in the 1990s as the cofounder of early Internet company America Online, is coming to Boston next week for a talk with former governor Deval Patrick.

Case is on tour promoting a new book, “The Third Wave,” in which he predicts that a new phase of Internet entrepreneurship will soon transform the health, education, transportation, energy, and food industries, in much the way companies like have disrupted traditional retailing.

He is scheduled to participate in a “fireside chat” with Patrick and John Harthorne, chief executive of the MassChallenge accelerator program, April 7 at 5 p.m., at the Hatch Fenway, a co-working space for startups at the Landmark Center in the Fenway.


Case cofounded AOL in the 1980s as a subscriber-based network for home computer users. In its original form, AOL wasn’t part of the Internet, but was connected to the global network in 1993.

The giant media company Time Warner merged with AOL in 2001 in a deal worth $164 billion, one of the largest corporate acquisitions in history. But the deal was a disastrous failure, and Case resigned as AOL chairman in 2003.

Since then, Case has served as chief executive of Revolution LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based investment firm that has backed companies such as online retailer Living Social and car rental company Zipcar.

Hiawatha Bray can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @GlobeTechLab.

Correction: An earlier version of this story inaccurately reported that Time Warner purchased AOL in 2001. This story was also amended to reflect the year that AOL first connected to the Internet.