Google Q4 Earnings Provides Increased Transparency

February 3, 2020

On Monday, Google parent company Alphabet released its first earnings report since Sundar Pichai took over as CEO in December when founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin stepped down from their management roles.

On the revenue front, the snapshot was mixed, and shares slid nearly 5 percent in after-hours trading.

Total fourth-quarter revenues were $46.07 billion, compared to the consensus estimate of $46.94 billion. Earnings per share were $15.35, compared to an estimate of $12.53.

The report was highly anticipated as analysts predicted that Pichai, formerly the CEO of Google and the public voice of the company in past earnings calls, would shift toward more transparency for shareholders.

"To provide further insight into our business and the opportunities ahead, we're now disclosing our revenue on a more granular basis, including for Search, YouTube ads, and Cloud," said Ruth Porat, chief financial officer of Alphabet and Google.

This is crucial for investors as both the video streaming site and cloud computing business have become leading drivers of growth for the tech giant. The new numbers confirm the narrative.

YouTube ads pulled in $4.72 billion in revenue for the quarter and $15.15 billion for the year. That compares with $11.16 billion for all of 2018.

Google Cloud generated $2.61 billion for the quarter and $8.92 billion for the year. That compares with $5.84 billion for all of 2018.

The division is in fierce competition with the likes of Amazon and Microsoft, which have also grown their presence in the cloud computing sector significantly in recent years.

Ad revenues remain the biggest chunk of the business, however, with $37.93 billion in Q4. That's up from $33.91 billion in Q3, and $32.63 billion for the same quarter last year.

"Our investments in deep computer science, including artificial intelligence, ambient computing, and cloud computing, provide a strong base for continued growth and new opportunities across Alphabet," said Pichai. "I'm really pleased with our continued progress in Search and in building two of our newer growth areas — YouTube, already at $15 billion in annual ad revenue, and Cloud, which is now on a $10 billion revenue run rate." Over the quarter, Google also acquired the fitness tracker company Fitbit for just over $2 billion.

It's also facing down a federal antitrust probe that could shake things up for the company in the year ahead.

close
We use cookies and similar technologies on this site to collect identifiers, such as IP address, and cookie and device IDs as described in our Privacy Policy.