‘I think with the “other bets” we are definitely at a phase where, while we take a long-term view, we also want to marry that with the discipline of making sure they are doing well. The Alphabet structure allows us to set up some of these things as independent companies and to raise money from outside investors.’
Newly minted Alphabet Inc. Chief Executive Sundar Pichai, who added that title to his duties as Google CEO in December, just told Fortune magazine he has no intention of giving up on “other bets” — adventurous startups under the Alphabet umbrella ranging from its autonomous vehicle unit to helium balloons that provide solar-powered internet services in remote areas.
In a major corporate restructuring in 2015, Alphabet GOOGL, +0.13% GOOG, +0.10% was established as a holding company overseeing “other bets” as a way to grow Google’s business beyond its bread-and-butter main search and advertising business.
“Alphabet allows us to pursue some of the other areas with maybe different structures we need,” Pichai said in the Fortune interview. “So, for example, we have a very successful venture and growth investment portfolio, which allows us to partner literally with hundreds of companies.”
The continued emphasis on “other bets” offers a window into Pichai’s thinking as Alphabet moves into its next phase of growth to maintain its newly attained status as a $1 trillion company in market value.
Up until now, Alphabet reached $136.8 billion in revenue in 2018 largely through Google, which accounted for 99% of all sales. FactSet expects Alphabet to reach $162.7 billion in 2019 — almost all of it via Google — when it reports fourth-quarter results on Jan. 31 after markets close.