Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Champagne at the Googleplex: GOOG Above $600/share

Google gained 15.57 today to close at $609.62/share today, breaking the 600 point barrier for the first time. That puts the company's market cap at over $190 billion, and means Google is worth more on paper than companies like Wal-Mart (the world's largest retailer) and Coca-Cola (the world's top brand).

Google is trading more than 7-times its IPO price of $85 per share and went from $500 to $600 per share in months less time than it took to go from $400 to $500. According to the Associated Press, the average target stock price for Google is at $614.64, though some analysts predict it will cross $700 per share by the end of 2008.

While Henry Blodget's $750 billion target market cap may be far fetched, Google's stock price continues to rise with few signs of slowing down. Still a darling of the Valley and still trouncing all comers in its primary (and most profitable) business (search), Google has pleased investors by consistently beating earnings estimates since going public in 2004. The company's stock has risen 30% so far this year and earnings are expected to rise 40% according to Thompson Financial.

Who benefits most from Google's meteoric stock price the most? Why, top Googlers, of course. Google has already minted at least 4 billionaires (founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page, CEO Eric Schmidt, and sales exec Omid Kordestani), while Sequoia Capital's initial $12.5 million investment in the company has also returned billions. Hundreds of the company's employees are multi-millionaires due to Google's Wall Street success.

Image credit: sevenblock.

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