Alphabet, the parent company of Google is a large collection of companies. Google is the largest of all the Alphabet companies but not the only one. There are several more businesses owned fully or partially by the company which it classifies as other bets in its form 10K. Some of these are in their initial development stage. Some are VIEs or variable Interest Entities through which Alphabet is investing in health research. In the medium to long term, Google expects these companies to become thriving and successful businesses.
To achieve the desired target, Alphabet Inc has ensured that each of these businesses has strong leadership and significant independence. These businesses are operating in industries dealing with high uncertainty but some of them have still achieved considerably strong positions and started generating revenue. Alphabet reports the revenue of all these companies in one place. From 2016 to 2018, the revenue from Other Bets has more than doubled but not touched one billion yet. The main source of revenue in the Other Bets category includes sales of internet and TV services through Access as well as licensing and R&D services through Verily.
The businesses included in Other Bets are:
Alphabet’s Fiber internet service is under its Access division. Launched in 2012, the services of Fiber have spread to 18 cities. In 2018, Alphabet hired Dinesh Jain to head its Access division. Jain was previously the Chief Operating Officer of Time Warner Cable. Fiber offers fast speed internet with upload and download speeds of 1 gigabit as well as streaming TV and phone services.
Capital G started as google capital in 2013 in Mountain View, California. It adopted the name Capital G in 2016 after the creation of Alphabet. Capital G is an equity investment fund under Alphabet that invests in technology companies to help them find growth with the help of Google’s vast expertise and resources. Through its functional expertise, Google helps its portfolio companies unlock new revenue drivers and find ways to cut down costs. The goal of Capital G is to make return driven investments in leading technology companies around the world and help entrepreneurs grow their businesses faster.
GV spun out of Google in 2009. It operates as an independent return-driven fund with Alphabet as its sole limited partner. GV or Google Ventures was founded in 2009 in Mountain View and Boston. In 2005, Google ventures became GV. Some of its early investments include Retail me Not, Gusto and Uber. However in 2019, GV exit Uber as well as Slack. The company has funded more than 400 portfolio companies and has 300 active portfolio companies. The emphasis of GV is on enterprise, life sciences, consumer and frontier technology. Apart from that GV has also helped more than 100 mergers and acquisitions succeed.
Verily, which was originally known as Google Life Sciences graduated from ‘X’ (Moonshot incubator of Alphabet) in 2015 to become an Alphabet company. It is mainly a research and development company that makes use of technology and data science to address some leading health-related (mainly aging) problems globally. Verily produces healthcare innovations by combining expertise from biology, computer science, material design, physics, and chemistry.
Waymo started as Google’s self-driving car project in 2009. Waymo one is Waymo’s commercial self-driving service that people can use to travel around. The service is available 24/7 and riders can use the Waymo app to call Waymo cars. The company is adding more cars and destinations to make its service available to more people. Currently, Waymo’s fleet includes modified Toyota Priuses, Lexus SUVs, a custom-built prototype vehicle ‘Firefly’, as well as Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans. The Chrysler Pacifica Minivan comes with a fully integrated hardware suite designed for full autonomy. After Chrysler, Waymo has partnered with Jaguar to add premium cars to its service. These cars will be called Jaguar I-Pace. To expand its services to logistics, Waymo is currently testing its technology on class 8 Trucks.
Here is Waymo’s mission:
Waymo’s mission is to make it safe and easy for people and things to get where they’re going. The Waymo Driver can improve the world’s access to mobility while saving thousands of lives now lost to traffic crashes.Waymo Mission Statement.
X is the idea incubator of Alphabet where its moonshot projects start from. Alphabet calls X its moonshot factory because it churns some of the most innovative ideas in emerging technologies like Waymo. Several of the above companies started from X and became Alphabet companies later. Here is how Alphabet has defined the goal of X:
Our goal: 10x impact on the world’s most intractable problems, not just 10% improvement. We approach projects that have the aspiration and riskiness of research with the speed and ambition of a startup.X Goal.
X is always working on new technologies that are kept under wraps initially. The areas of focus include AI, machine learning, life sciences, robotics, renewable energy, cybersecurity, and many more. It is currently working on making learning robots that can operate autonomously in unstructured human environments. Several successful projects have already graduated from X including the cybersecurity project Chronicle that uses computing power, machine learning and very large amounts of storage to help the enterprises understand and manage their cybersecurity-related data better. Other successful moonshot projects that X has completed include Verily, Brain, Dandelion, Wing, Loon, and Waymo.
|Pratap, A. (2020, January 21). What are the other bets of Alphabet. Retrieved from https://notesmatic.com/what-are-the-other-bets-of-alphabet/
|Pratap, Abhijeet. “What Are the Other Bets of Alphabet.” Cheshnotes, 21 Jan. 2020, notesmatic.com/2020/01/what-are-the-other-bets-of-alphabet/.