Google - Do no Evil - Tell that to the EU
I was stuck this morning at the car dealership while they were working on my car but at least I got to read the Financial Times from cover to cover. I like to know what they are thinking on the other side of the pond. I found no less than 13 different articles or editorials about Google (GOOG) and how everyone in Europe thinks that the only way Google could be so successful is that they aren't playing fair.
If there is a person on the planet that doesn't know about Google it's best explained in an old press release: "Google is a public and profitable company focused on search services. Named for the mathematical term `googol`, Google operates web sites at many international domains, with the most trafficked being www.google.com. Google is widely recognized as the `World's Best Search Engine` and is fast, accurate and easy to use. The company also serves corporate clients, including advertisers, content publishers and site managers with cost-effective advertising and a wide range of revenue generating search services. Google's breakthrough technology and continued innovation serve the company's mission of `organizing the world's information and making it universally accessible and useful." Some where I also heard the mission was "Do no evil". Tell that to the EU.
What has all Europe in a tizzy is that most of their search engine business models worked under a premise that is you offered local content in the local language and concentrated on local web sites you'd have the market share of the local market. Boy were they off base. In almost every single country Google has the majority of the market share and is growing its market share at the expense of the in country search engines.
Now I realize that Google is not the type of company I normally look at on Financial Tides. It's not a recent momentum stock pick in any ones' book. Recently Barchart's 13 technical indicators have 11 of 13 sell signals for an overall 80% sell recommendation. The stock is still off it's 11/2007 high of 747.24 by 30.25%. So why am I even looking?
There seems to be some opposite views about behemoth companies like Google:
It's too big to fail It's too big to have significant growth
I think both views are wrong. The management at Google realizes that there are a lot of smart people out there that want to shoot them down so they continue to improve the product and come up with new ways to stay ahead of the competition. Kind of sounds like what Microsoft has been doing for years. They continue to do what is important to you and I by finding new ways to monetize the product. Google, after it conquers the world might become the biggest cash cow ever.
What do the analysts say? There are 38 analysts following the company and 33 of them have buy or better recommendations outstanding, They look for a 15.4% increase in next years revenue and a 14.7% increase in earnings per share. They expect the 5 year compounded EPS growth to be 21.31%. Those don't seem like projections for one of the largest companies on the planet, those are numbers you'd expect to see in a small cap growth recommendation.
Just how popular is the company with investors? The Motley Fool CAPS members think the stock will out perform the market by a vote of 12695 to 2523 with the All Stars agreeing 2605 to 352. The Wall Street columnists Fool follows give GOOG a thumbs up 43 to 0.
Just how popular is the company world wide? Well I Googled the most visible person I could think of and Obama can up with 16.1 million references. That's pretty big! When I Goggled Google the count was 156 Million; almost 10 times the number of hits for the most powerful person on the planet.
Google can't be ignored. Why should you invest:
1 - It's one of the most noticeable companies on the globe but still has projected growth rates of a small cap growth stock
2 - If other search engines are calling foul and talking smack about you, you must be doing something right
3 - The world seems to be its oyster and as computer use grows in developing and third work countries every new computer user is a potential customer
4 - Google is more popular that Obama -- even among democrats and socialists
You have to decide if the stock is right for you but you can't ignore it as a possibility. After they conquer the world and fully monetize the product dividends should being flowing.
Jim Van Meerten is an investor who writes on financial matters here and on Financial Tides. Please leave a comment below or email JimVanMeerten@gmail.com.
Disclosure: No positions in GOOG at the time of publication
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