Google is set to undergo a significant company restructure that will see it transition to a new holding company called Alphabet.
Google fans needn’t worry however, as the firm’s core business including its search engine, Maps, YouTube, Android and other services will still fall under the same familiar brand.
Alphabet will now encompass a slimmed-down Google company that will be overseen by CEO Sundar Pichai and a mixture of other businesses including Calico, Nest, Google Ventures and Google X, which will be managed separately. All of the formal details regarding the transition from Google to Alphabet have been released in the company’s SEC filing.
Although the news is surprising, it appears as though it will largely be business as usual at Alphabet. Shareholders will receive one Alphabet share for every Google share that they previously owned and the new holding company will be managed by CEO Larry Page, president Sergey Brin, executive chairman Eric Schmidt, CFO Ruth Porat and senior vice president David Drummond, just as Google was.
Alphabet does, however, have a whole new web address and a slightly unusual one at that. Writing at the new URL abc.xyz, Larry Page said that the firm will continue the Google tradition of trying things that are speculative, strange and “crazy.”
“Alphabet is about businesses prospering through strong leaders and independence,” he said. “In general, our model is to have a strong CEO who runs each business, with Sergey and me in service to them as needed. We will rigorously handle capital allocation and work to make sure each business is executing well. We'll also make sure we have a great CEO for each business, and we’ll determine their compensation.”
It remains to be seen whether the creation of Alphabet will lead to any noticeable changes from a consumer point of view, but Mr Page is certainly excited about the transition, promising more ambition and transparency and reassuring users that he too, is “still getting used to the name.”