In 1999, before Google was a well-known (or well-funded) company, founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin were discussing their company with a new board member. The venture capitalist asked Page and Brin how big they expected their company could be, and Page shot back a with a number that few companies had reached at the time, far exceeding the VC’s projection.
He predicted the company would make $10 billion in revenue, which Doerr calculated to be equivalent to $100 billion in market capitalization.
He’s one of the richest people in the world today, but in 1999 Larry Page was the young co-founder of a relatively unknown company called Google, with big plans for its future.
Page and co-founder Sergey Brin’s goal was to “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful,” recalls venture capitalist John Doerr in his book “Measure What Matters.” But first, Doerr — who had already invested $11.8 million to take a 12% ownership stake and a board seat — had to help them organize their newly incorporated company. In order to gauge their confidence, he asked Page and Brin how big the company could one day be, having already privately projected that it could be worth $1 billion “if everything broke right.” “Ten billion dollars,” Page responded.
“You mean market cap, right?” Doerr asked, to be sure. Google’s Larry Page ‘floored’ an early investor when he predicted it could be twice as big as Yahoo before it even had a business model (GOOG, GOOGL)
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