Google CEO Larry Page says doubling shareholders’ stock with non-voting shares won’t dilute the governing structure
Google reported a substantial increase in revenue and income in its first-quarter earnings while CEO Larry Page announced an unusual stock split plan.
Shareholders will now double their number of stocks, but the new shares will be non-voting.
“These non-voting shares will be available for corporate uses, like equity-based employee compensation, that might otherwise dilute our governance structure,” Page told analysts on the earnings call.
In explaining the move, Page quoted a founder's letter from when the company went public in 2004. The premise was that Google would offer shareholders a major stake in the company's future but "little ability to influence decisions through voting rights."
Page said this maneuver reinforces that idea, satisfying shareholders while ensuring that he, co-founder Sergey Brin and Eric Schmidt can control the company's planning and maintain a focus on the long-term.
As for the earnings, Google announced revenue of $8.1 billion, up 24 percent over the same frame from last year and income of $2.9 billion, up 55 percent over last year.
Its earnings per share of $10.08 per share beat analyst expectations of $9.65 per share by 4.5 percent.
The one red flag in the earnings report is the continued decline in cost per click for advertising. That is the amount Google gets from search advertisers for each click by one of its users.
That total dropped 12 percent in this quarter.
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