Beauty & Brains in Branding & Web

Google’s Stock Split and the Real Motivation Behind It

GoogleGoogle’s stock price was cut in half Wednesday following a 2 for 1 stock split, traditionally used to decrease the amount required for investors to buy in or as a show of confidence by company managers.

Forbes contributor Chuck Jones doesn’t believe Google is slicing its stock for traditional reasons, however. In his article, Google Stock Split: In Larry and Sergey We Trust, Jones posits that the split was planned so that the founders can maintain voting control.

Jones points out that none of Google’s Class A shares, which provide investors with one vote per share, are owned by Larry or Sergey, who have most of their stake invested in Class B shares that provide 10 votes per share.

The new Class C shares created by the split will be given to Class A and B shareholders, but will not provide any votes. These are also the shares that the company will issue for future acquisitions and stock awards.

Jones accurately concludes that Brin and Sergey, through this split, have solidified 55% voting control, “essentially complete control of the company”.

If you don’t like it, Jones suggests, “you can just sell your stock.” Investors who are concerned about the company’s peripheral acquisitions or departure from its core business can make their voices heard by shedding their stock and with it, their concerns about Google’s direction.

What’s your position on the split? Will you be using the lower stock price as a chance to get in on Google?

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