Google was founded as a company that did Internet search. Over time, it has broadened into areas as varied as drones, pharmaceuticals and venture capital, none of which make much money, and some of which have spooked investors.
The tech company announced on Monday that it would rebrand itself as Alphabet – a new holding company whose largest wholly owned subsidiary will be Google.
In a surprise blogpost made public after the stock markets closed, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founders, announced a radical shake-up of the company’s corporate structure and management, handing control of its core search engine business to rising star Sundar Pichai.
The new company, Alphabet, will preside over a collection of companies, the largest of which will be Google. Even the site’s new address eschewed convention: https://abc.xyz/
All shares of Google will automatically convert into corresponding shares of Alphabet, which will continue to trade under the stock ticker symbols GOOG and GOOGL. Shares in Google soared 5% in after hours trading. The new structure is said to be similar to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, which wholly owns a number of diverse holdings and has stakes in several others.
Page will become Alphabet’s CEO. Brin will be its president, and Eric Schmidt will be the executive chairman of Alphabet. Ruth Porat will be its CFO, and David C Drummond will be the chief legal officer and secretary. The company’s chief business officer, Omid Kordistani, will step down and become an adviser to Alphabet and Google, according to the company’s SEC filing.