Google’s first ever stock split will take place on April 2. The move was expected to happen years ago but tensions and legal issues with some stockholders forced the search giant to shelf those plans. We’re back to green light racing now as the move has since been approved by the board of directors.
The split will create a new class of C stock that has no voting power. A single share of class C stock will be distributed for each share of class A stock (the type that carries voting power) that is owned as of March 27. When the split takes place, the current stock value will be split equally between the two share types.
The two classes of stock will each be traded separately with their own ticker symbols. Class C shares will use the existing “GOOG” ticker while class A shares will trade as “GOOGL.”
A third class of shares is owned by Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page. These shares are worth 10 votes each and combined, allows the co-founders to control 56 percent of shareholder votes. That percentage has been declining as Google has been using class A stock to reward employees and help finance some key acquisitions over the past 10 years or so.
The new class of stock will allow Google to keep dishing out shares to employees without the risk of the co-founders losing controlling power.