Google revenues grow $1 billion in a quarter

Ronny Kerr · January 21, 2011 · Short URL:

While having expanded in multiple categories, Google still draws 97 percent of revenue from ads


GoogleBoy, Apple and Google sure do know how to bury their own good news. Earlier this week, Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced to the company that he would be taking a medical leave of absence, with no further details, leaving investors and employees puzzled and uncertain about the company’s future leadership; the next day, the company announced record-breaking revenue, and no one really seemed interested.
Google pulled a similar move, overshadowing its latest financial results with CEO Eric Schmidt’s announcement that he will be replaced in the executive position by co-founder Larry Page starting April 4. But those financial results are still worth taking a look at.
The not-just-search company reported revenues of $8.44 billion for the fourth financial quarter, up 26 percent compared to the same time last year. In the third quarter of 2010, Google reported revenues of $7.29 billion, so the company’s growth is tangible even quarter to quarter.
Net income, Google reported, was $2.54 billion, compared to $1.97 billion in the fourth quarter of 2009 and $2.2 billion in the third quarter of 2010.
To compare with one of its biggest rivals, Apple just reported $26.76 billion in revenue and net quarterly profit of $6 billion.

Apple, however, is mostly a major Google competitor in the mobile space: the Android vs. iPhone fight is one of the most well-documented, ongoing tech battles around. But Google isn’t drawing most of its money from sales of the Android operating system, but rather from advertising sold on sites it owns as well as on third-party sites.

Google-owned sites generated $5.67 billion, or 67 percent of total revenues, and company partner sites running AdSense programs generated $2.5 billion, or 30 percent of total revenues.

With that in mind, it’s worth remembering that an even greater future threat for the Mountain View company is just down the street, not in Cupertino, but in Palo Alto. Facebook, though still a private company and not required to publish financials, is estimated to have made $1.86 billion in ad revenue in 2010. Though still a far cry from Google’s revenue in just one quarter, that number is expected to increase exponentially in the next two years, and possibly beyond that too.

Can there be two Web behemoths whose sole sustenance is advertising sales? Only one thing is certain: the cool confidence of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in developing his social platform contrasts markedly with the fumbling social efforts of its rival (Google Wave, Google Buzz, etc). Social is taking us into the future, and advertising will follow.


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