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  • Voltaire Staff

Google officially enters $2 trillion club

Google parent Alphabet officially became a $2 trillion company, having sustained the market capitalisation throughout an entire day of trading on Thursday.

The company had last touched the $2 trillion mark in November 2021 briefly.

Google now stands as the fourth most valuable public company globally, trailing behind Nvidia at $2.2 trillion, Apple at $2.6 trillion, and Microsoft leading at $3.0 trillion. Meanwhile, Amazon maintains a market cap of $1.8 trillion, while Meta, formerly known as Facebook, lags behind at $1.1 trillion.

On Thursday, Meta's stock price plummeted by 10 per cent subsequent to Mark Zuckerberg's announcement regarding the prolonged timeframe for profitability in ambitious ventures within generative AI.

On Friday, Google disclosed that it has already begun capitalising on AI in minor capacities, such as aiding advertisers in targeting specific demographics through its AI Performance Max tool.

Google said that advertisers using this feature are experiencing an improvement, with campaigns boasting a "63 per cent more likely" chance of achieving good or excellent ad strength.

The company also said that Discover Financial is introducing AI tools to nearly 10,000 call centre agents, and Ikea is observing a rise in revenue from "value-based bidding solutions."

Although Google is not currently discussing the monetisation of AI responses in Google Search, CEO Sundar Pichai has expressed confidence in the company's ability to control the costs associated with providing these responses.

"We’re being measured in how we do this, focusing on areas where Gen AI can improve the search experience while also prioritising traffic to websites and merchants," Pichai said.

Google's core operations continue to thrive, as is evident from its latest financial results.

According to the Q1 2024 earnings report released Thursday, the company achieved a profit of $23.7 billion on revenue of $80.5 billion.

This represents a 15 per cent increase in revenue compared to the previous year and a 14 per cent rise in profit compared to the holiday quarter, despite slightly higher search and ad revenue during that period.

Although Google has been laying off its employees since the beginning of the year, potentially contributing to these increased profits, it appears that the pace of layoffs has slowed or halted. In the previous quarter, Google's expenditure on layoffs totalled $700 million in January alone.

However, the Q1 report reveals that Google only spent $716 million on "severance and related charges" across January, February, and March.

During Q1, both search and advertising revenue saw a 14 per cent year-over-year growth, while YouTube ad revenue surged by nearly 21 per cent.


 Image source: Unsplash



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