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Sticking to its offbeat nature, Google plans to issue two separate classes of stock: Class A and Class B. The two would have identical rights, with one caveat: Class B holders -- whose ranks are to include Page, Brin and other trusted insiders -- are entitled to 10 votes per share. Class A holders receive one vote per share.
Full Story [cbs.marketwatch.com]
Since the first whisper of a Google IPO people have been speculating about a decline in quality due to shareholder demands. It doesn't appear that Page and Brin plan to relinquish control.
The dual-class structure could also lead to another consequence.
"There is a price for this kind of structure," said Greg Taxim, CEO of proxy research advisory firm Glass, Lewis & Co. in San Francisco. "If shareholders are smart, they will pay less for this stock."
In my opinion, one of the biggest risks Google face is losing their direction, their sparkle, their 'zing'.
I was slightly disappointed when I saw that they'd filed. As if the end of the Google era loomed. As if there would not be different from 'the others' once the inevitable post-IPO short-termism took hold.
When I read about the dual class structure, or rather the extent of it, I was quite reassured.
Some investors will be uneasy about so much control resting with the founders and other googlers, but I see it as giving Google a greater chance of keeping the 'Google difference' for the longer-term.