Google rebrands to Alphabet as part of radical overhaul

Google is separating its internet operations including Android, YouTube and the Google search engine from its research divisions, including X Lab and its health businesses, as part of a radical overhaul that will see the formation of a new parent company called Alphabet.

The move means co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin will now be the bosses at Alphabet, serving as CEO and president respectively. Sundar Pichai will take over as CEO of the core Google business.

In a blog post on the surprise move, Page said the move will mean the company can keep “tremendous focus on the extraordinary opportunities we have inside of Google”. It will now be a “bit slimmed down”, with companies that are “fair afield” from its main internet products contained within Alphabet instead.

These include its health efforts such as Life Sciences and Calico as well as X Lab, which incubates efforts such as its drone delivery service Wing. Google Ventures and Google Capital will also come under Alphabet.

The move aims to make the company cleaner and more accountable. Google Inc will change to Alphabet Inc and continue to report quarterly results, with Google’s performance broken out.

Page hopes the restructure will allow Alphabet companies to develop their own brands, although he highlights that it has no intention of Alphabet becoming a “big consumer brand”. He says the move should make Google “even better” through greater focus

“We liked the name Alphabet because it means a collection of letters that represent language, one of humanity’s most important innovations, and is the core of how we index with Google search! We also like that it means alpha-bet (Alpha is investment return above benchmark), which we strive for! I should add that we are not intending for this to be a big consumer brand with related products–the whole point is that Alphabet companies should have independence and develop their own brands,” he says.

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Mark Ritson: Google needs to search for new brand values

Mark Ritson

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Google is looking to reposition itself. That was the key takeaway from an interview the company’s co-founder and chief executive Larry Page gave to the Financial Times last week.

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