Google founders plan multi-billion dollar share sale

Founders of the internet search giant Google are about to sell millions of shares, potentially earning them billions of dollars.

According to a new filing with the SEC (US Security and Exchange Commission), Sergey Brin and Larry Page they will sell approximately two million shares of each Class B common stock they own, and another two million shares of their Class C non-voting stocks.

Both Class B and Class C are currently worth $550 (£356.71) a share, meaning the total amount of eight million shares they want to sell will get them some $4.4 billion (£2.85b).

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It wasn’t specified when the selling will occur, but as the filing says, it will take place over an extended period of time in order to minimise market impact.

The filing also says that the duo will, after the transaction is complete, still own some 40.6 million Class B stock, and the same amount of Class C.

However, selling all these stocks won’t lose them the majority in Google.

As the filing says, before the selling, the duo had 44.6 million of Class B common stock and 44.6 million Class C stock, which equals to approximately 54.6 per cent of the voting power.

“If Larry and Sergey complete all the planned sales under these newly adopted Rule 10b5-1 stock trading plans, they would continue to collectively own approximately 40.6 million shares of Class B common stock, which would represent approximately 11.9 per cent of Google’s outstanding Class A and Class B common stock, taken together, and approximately 52.0 per cent of the voting power of Google’s outstanding voting stock”.

So even after the sale, they will still retain majority control of Google, thanks to the dual-class structure of the company.