Contact: Brenon Daly
It’s a new era at Google. After the market closes, Google’s once-and-future king Larry Page will give his first report to Wall Street since returning to the throne at the search company he helped found. Page took over at the beginning of the month, with Google shares trading essentially where they were a year ago.
Page, of course, is replacing Eric Schmidt, the ‘grownup’ who was brought in a decade ago to run Google, who now serves as executive chairman at the company. It’s interesting to note from our view that Schmidt steps from Google’s corner office back into a tech industry that looks very different from when the avowed technologist joined the company in 2001. Consider this: both companies where Schmidt basically spent his entire career – most notably Sun Microsystems, but also a relatively brief stint in charge of Novell – have been sold while he was at Google.
Further, both of the sales of Schmidt’s previous companies were pretty much scrap sales, valuing the once-formidable companies at less than one times their revenue. (Collectively, the equity value for both Sun and Novell at the time of their sales is just one-twentieth Google’s current valuation.) Of course, there are some observers who say it’s only a matter of time before Google – having largely missed the shift to social networking – may be headed for a long, slow decline of its own. Just like Sun and Novell.