Sunday, February 12, 2017

Google Has a Sense of Humor

Google has a sense of humor. When Alphabet announced that it would buy back part of its own shares, it looked like a standard announcement.

Companies regularly buy back their own stock when they have a lot of money in their coffers or when they have the feeling that their stock in undervalued. 

But what is hilarious in this case is the price of the buy back: USD 7,019,340,976.83.

This number is the sum of 26 (the number of letters in the current alphabet) to the power of the mathematical constant e times one million. It would have been easy (and so boring!) to announce a price of USD 7b, so why not throw in another USD 19m plus to have some fun? Especially when money is not an object!

It is not the first time that Google has some nerdy fun, just look at the name Google itself. It’s a play on the words “googol” which stands for the number 1 with one hundred zeros. It is not the first time that Alphabet had this kind of fun. In 2015, it bought back shares in the amount of USD 5,099,019,513.59. That number is the square root of 26 times one million.

When Google went public, the intention was to raise USD 2,718,281,828 which is 1 billion times the mathematical constant e. Google obviously has a thing for this constant, it also used it when is made its offer of USD 3.14b for Nortel Networks. Unsuccessfully so, the Nortel’s patent portfolio was sold for USD 4.5m.

Stay tuned for the next nerdy announcement!

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