If ever anyone wanted to know just how profitable the Internet could be, the two founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, have this last week shown just that. The pair announced that they would be selling some of their shares in Google to raise a little much needed cash. The duo will be selling five million shares between them, slowly over the next five years so as not to damage Google’s huge share price, netting them $5.5 billion – which is around £3.4 billion, or £1.7 billion each.
In case you were wondering just how much of their share of Google they will be parting with, don’t worry, they’ll still have more than enough should they wish to raise some more cash further down the line. After selling five million shares, they will still hold 47.7 million shares between them. This is worth around £16.1 billion going off today’s share price.
Naturally the pair needed to raise this cash because they famously take a pay cheque of just $1 per year in their job roles.
The sale of the five million shares will have an impact on Google however, as it will mean that Sergey Brin and Larry Page will relinquish their controlling vote in Google. After the sale they will have just 48% of the company, dropping from 59%.
The duo were responsible for inventing Google back in 1996 (can you remember a time before Google?) while they were at Stanford. The first effort at Google was dubbed ‘Backrub’. It was later renamed to PageRank, before finally being called Google.
Google had indexed around 60 million pages by the end of 1998, just two years after it first saw life. 85% of all searches on the Internet went through Google by 2004.