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Google company rebrands as Alphabet Inc

By | Published on Tuesday 11 August 2015


Having now successfully pursued every kind of known evil from A all the way through to Z, Google is (possibly) celebrating with a rebrand, becoming Alphabet. And if you don’t believe me, just Alphabet it.

Though this is more of a corporate rejig than a rebrand, in that the core Google businesses will remain part of a company called Google, which will in turn be owned by a corporate vehicle called Alphabet Inc. Periphery Google ventures will then become standalone companies within the Alphabet group. Each will be given a letter and company bonuses will be paid out according to that week’s ‘Sesame Street’. Maybe.

Google co-founder Larry Page explained the rejig in a blog post which seems to have been well received by Wall Street. He said of the new entity: “Alphabet is mostly a collection of companies. The largest of which, of course, is Google. This newer Google is a bit slimmed down, with the companies that are pretty far afield of our main internet products contained in Alphabet instead… Fundamentally, we believe this allows us more management scale, as we can run things independently that aren’t very related”.

Most of the top guard at what was Google Inc will become the top guard at Alphabet Inc, allowing key players in the next layer down of the firm’s corporate hierarchy to get nice new job titles, them now being the top guard of the Google subsidiary. Meanwhile former Google Inc shareholders become Alphabet Inc shareholders.

Oh, and the choice of name? Page continues: “We liked the name Alphabet because it means a collection of letters that represent language, one of humanity’s most important innovations, and is the core of how we index with Google search! We also like that it means alpha-bet (alpha is investment return above benchmark), which we strive for!”

So now you know. Already standalone Google subsidiaries that are closely allied to the core Google business – so, YouTube for example – will remain part of the Google company within the Alphabet group. It’s more periphery pursuits, like drone building and venture capital investments, that will now sit outside of Google.

Which is possibly good news for a company like Kobalt, which has backing from Google Ventures. Some in the music community criticised Kobalt – as a supposedly artist-friendly music rights firm – for taking investment from Google, which some music types see as the enemy. While it may be a structural technicality, the overhaul at Alphabet Inc means that that investment is all the more removed from the parts of Google which anger some in the music world.