Sergey Brin and Larry Page founded Google in 1997 in a Menlo Park garage. Later, they would write, “Google is not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one.” They proved it by turning Google into one of the world’s most powerful companies.
Today, Google is a holding of the parent company Alphabet, part of an evolution that began in 2015 in hopes of helping to speed up development in all their various divisions. Anyone wanting to do a Google company analysis needs to clear up his schedule because the work that Google, or Alphabet (GOOGL), does covers all avenues of modern life.
Only Apple, Microsoft and Amazon are bigger than Google on the balance sheet, all closing in on a value of a trillion dollars. Google isn't just a search engine and cloud service; it is revolutionizing life as you know it, from robotics and space exploration to curing diseases and harnessing the wind.
Google Industry Players
From the brand’s early days, the projects at Alphabet and Google included discoveries and innovations that have shaped the modern world and will continue doing so for decades, it seems. The year 2020 started with a big change for the juggernaut company as Brin and Page stepped aside and named Sundar Pichai as the new CEO of both Google and Alphabet, with the founders remaining on the boards.
What all began as "Google" has morphed into a number of divisions under the giant. Among some of the largest players include:
- Sidewalk Labs: Reinventing what neighborhoods can be, Sidewalk Labs is creating the “smart city” — an endeavor that worries privacy activists. Its 190-acre pilot project on Toronto, Canada’s waterfront is budgeted at $1.3 billion and is expected to create 44,000 jobs along with innovations like “intelligent sidewalks” and autonomous vehicles.
- Other Bets: This play on words (“alpha bet,” get it?) heads some of the research and development divisions, like “X,” which is focused in part on space travel.
- Verily: Here’s where Google is tackling health care and disease prevention. One advancement that’s been put on ice for now is a smart contact lens that can monitor diabetic insulin levels.
- Calico: Another medical endeavor, Calico’s 2013 launch came with a goal to “cure death,” and they’re working toward that by studying ageing with MIT’s Broad Institute.
Other Google Holdings
Those companies barely scratch the surface. There are so many Google properties, like the autonomous vehicle division Waymo and CapitalG, formerly known as Google Capital, known for funding startups like Airbnb and Glassdoor. At DeepMind, they’re advancing machine learning and artificial intelligence, and Jigsaw is where they're studying technology that can help harassment, censorship and other online concerns.
Don’t forget popular holdings like Pixel, the market-disrupting phone on the Android system, video powerhouse YouTube and the smart line of home-tech products from Nest. Of course, businesses and people around the world rely on products like its cloud software, Google Translate, Google Maps and so much more.
Google Market Analysis
Alphabet shares are noted on the stock ticker as GOOG and GOOGL. The GOOG shares are nonvoting, whereas the GOOGL shares are voting shares. There are actually three classes, though: The GOOGL voting shares are either Class A, held by a regular investor, or Class B, which has 10 times the voting power of Class A and can only be owned by company founders. Class C comprises the GOOG shares, held largely by employees and a few Class A stock owners.
The top three share owners are Brin, Page and former CEO Eric Schmidt. Brin and Page alone combine for a net worth of over $123 billion thanks to their shares. When Pichai took over as CEO in December 2019, GOOG stock sustained its value of over $1,300 per share. The company’s market cap was over $855 billion, and it employed nearly 104,000 people around the world.
Google has radically changed the world, and its prospects grow daily as more projects under its various divisions become promising enough to spin out as their own units. Google and Alphabet’s products are used around the world daily by billions of people, and there’s no sign of that changing.
- Business Insider: Here Are All the Companies and Divisions Under Google's Parent Company, Alphabet, Which Just Had a Major Shake-up at the Top
- Investopedia: Alphabet's GOOG vs. GOOGL: What's the Difference?
- BlogTO: Sidewalk Labs Unveils Monster Plan for Toronto's Neighbourhood of the Future
- CNN: Google Co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin Stepping Down as Alphabet Executives
Steffani Cameron is a professional writer who has written for the Washington Post, Culture, Yahoo!, Canadian Traveller, and many other platforms. Some writing projects have included ghost-writing for CEOs and doing strategy white papers. She frequently writes for corporate clients representing Fortune 500 brands on subjects that include marketing, business, and social media trends.