|Google CEO, Eric Schmidt: A Quirky IPO|
Eric Schmidt talks in detail about Google's IPO
How I Did It: Google’s CEO on the Enduring Lessons of a Quirky IPO [hbr.org]
|It happened six years ago, but I still remember every detail of our journey to becoming a public company. It was a uniquely “Googley” experience that to this day says a lot about who we are. |
|People predicted that we would suddenly be divided into haves and have-nots on the basis of how many shares of Google stock each of us held. The talent would cash out and quit. A new focus on pleasing Wall Street would cause us to lose our prized objectivity and independence. Developing the infrastructure to become a public company would dull our edge. Ultimately, people feared that as Google transitioned from a bright young start-up to a mature public company, it would lose the quirky spirit that had made it so innovative. |
|None of that happened. And I firmly believe that at our core we are the same company we were then—just a lot bigger. |
|I know this may sound like baloney, but we settled decisively on the Dutch auction after we got a letter from a little old lady—or at least someone who claimed to be a little old lady. She wrote something along the lines of “I don’t understand why I can’t make money from your IPO the way the stockbrokers will.” |
Actually to me it looks like a lot of it happened despite assertations to the contrary.
|The talent would cash out and quit. |
No idea if this happened or not, but there's certainly numerous tales of Googler's quitting and creating new startups - some of them then later purchased by Google.
|Developing the infrastructure to become a public company would dull our edge. |
Remind me again what you've accomplished since the IPO? OK, we had Google and adsense before the IPO, now we've got, ummmmmm, hang on. The new adwords certifcation program?
|Ultimately, people feared that as Google transitioned from a bright young start-up to a mature public company, it would lose the quirky spirit that had made it so innovative. |
Pre-IPO this community loved Google. Over time, post-IPO, many of the webmaster/SEO/online community now see Google as an adversary. The last thing I see when I see Google is 'quirky spirit'. When I look at Google, I see Monolithic Microsoft, with a liberal dash of hypocrisy.
|When I look at Google, I see Monolithic Microsoft, with a liberal dash of hypocrisy. |
Whew..... harsh words .... and sadly, with more than a grain of salt of truth.
What made Google.v1 so great was their innovation. Yes, there were search engines already in place, but the early Google team came at it from a direction that was right, and with exactly the right attitude (for that time). Most of the failures since then have been a result of Google trying to play catch up with other innovators but not doing much meaningful or impressive innovation themselves. These other companies are simply doing it better, just as Google once did it better than InfoSeek or Excite or AltaVista or (name that tune!). For now and for the foreseeable future they remain the Goliath of the search engine world, but the bloom is off the rose, and as far as I can see, it ain't comin' back, especially given their blatant disregard for privacy concerns and their over-usage of penalties that can strike from out of the blue, without any apparent rhyme or reason. That gets old, and it leaves a bitter taste.
Actually they did a lot since IPO: a sleuth of tools for WMs, improvements to adsense and adword, with both becoming mature platforms used even by ad agencies now, then came the docs and calendars and gmail and voice, and then Chrome and Android.
I must agree though that the money making is still the same, as most of these new products don't bring in a cent. The correct terming would be that Google is still a one-trick horse (ads) since IPO.
The other truth is that a lot of this "innovation" was actually bought by swallowing start-ups.
And also, to this day, I trust my info held by the big G more than by M$ or Apple, or worse FB (see [wired.com...]
|a sleuth of tools for WMs, improvements to adsense and adword, with both becoming mature platforms used even by ad agencies now, then came the docs and calendars and gmail and voice, and then Chrome and Android. |
Stop it, you're putting me to sleep.
They've got endless trucks of cash at the front door and that's all the 'innovation' they can come up with?
I ran adwords 5-6 years ago. I ran a campaign earlier this year. 99% of what I used then and now haven't changed. They tweaked a few things, they've done nothing new.
Jeepers, I bring out new calculators and features on my website faster than they do, and all I've got is a part time programmer with a poor grasp of the English language :).
|brotherhood of LAN|
Google maps/Earth were one of their most popular and innovative creations imo, a lot of websites are using those maps free of charge.
|Actually they did a lot since IPO: a sleuth of tools for WMs, improvements to adsense and adword, with both becoming mature platforms used even by ad agencies now, then came the docs and calendars and gmail and voice, and then Chrome and Android. |
Webmaster Tools: I agree partially on this, provide a picture but then again, the picture they want me to see.
AdSense/AdWords: I see no real improvements on these which is a bit strange since it's their only cash cow. Had you mentioned analytics I'd have agreed partially, though I respect my visitors and would never use that sort of spyware, they actually have done a good job opening the software they bought from urchin to be used by all kind of publishers.
Docs: Are you serious? Would a serious company or individual share its business information with Big Brother?
Calendars: They're fine, not impressive but just fine. Though I'm pretty sure there are many freelancers out there who could programme a clone in two weeks or so.
Gmail: Never impressed me, what couldn't do rocketmail that Gmail can? (Apart from having a robot reading your messages) I hate its label system, it's messy and confusing.
Chrome: Well, it's a nice copy of Apple Safari with some improvements and the always running process.
Android: This was a nice acquisition, nowadays with a few improvements here and there but still there are better options.
However, Mr Schmidt was probably thinking about what they're doing with their other multiple acquisitions and what they're planning to do with them.
Despite of their many acquisitions their only real business is still AdSense/AdWords obviously centred on their scrapper engine, there is where the Web needs real serious competition.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not against g$$gle or any other corporation, I'm against arrogance, lies and disrespect for users rights.