Google is a US company providing Internet-related products and services, including internet search, cloud computing, and software and advertising technologies. Founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin with an unofficial slogan of “Don’t be evil”, the company has established itself in the mobile sector through its widely used Android operating system, and has a major presence in the smartphone market.
Google share price jumps past US$1,000
New earnings report spurs 14pc jump into rare 4-figure territory, soaring from 2004's US$85
Google has done something few companies ever do in the stock market: It has joined the US$1,000 club.
On Friday, Google's share price jumped above that amount for the first time, marking another milestone in its remarkable ascent from US$85 in its public offering in 2004.
It is a reminder of the new order that has taken hold in the technology world in just a few years - and how far apart the winners are from the losers.
Google closed up 14 per cent on Friday, at US$1,011.41, after a better-than-expected earnings release late on Thursday. The jump brought its gain since its initial offering to roughly 1,100 per cent. It has risen every year since except 2010 and 2008.
By comparison, the overall Nasdaq composite rose 120 per cent, while Microsoft - 10 years ago the most feared giant in technology - gained just 28 per cent.
Friday's gain made Google, already one of the world's most valuable companies, one of the few in which buying a single share costs more than US$1,000.
Google was the second company on the S&P 500 list to top US$1,000. Online travel firm Priceline was first past the post last month, soaring to US$1,074; it closed at US$1,048 on Friday.
The rally also sent Google's market capitalisation to US$337.39 billion, making it the third-largest publicly traded company behind ExxonMobil and Apple.
Outside of the S&P 500, only a couple have such massive prices: Berkshire Hathaway's A-class shares, at US$175,748, trade just a few hundred shares daily; Seaboard Corp, at US$2,810.98, also only trades a few times daily.
It is unlikely that Google shares will stay above US$1,000 for very long. The company plans to issue a new class of stock that will likely cut the value of the shares in half, though its market capitalisation will be unaffected.
The New York Times, Reuters, Agence France-Presse