Google headquarters
Clay Mclachlan  /  REUTERS
Web search leader Google Inc. posted a quarterly profit that blew past year-earlier results as search advertising continued to grow at a rapid clip.
updated 4/21/2005 4:45:26 PM ET 2005-04-21T20:45:26

Google Inc.’s first-quarter profit increased by nearly six-fold as the online search engine leader’s rapid growth continued to soar beyond analysts’ bullish expectations.

The Mountain View-based company said Thursday that it earned $369.2 million, or $1.29 per share, for the three months ended in March. That compared with net income of $64 million, or 24 cents per share, at the same time last year.

Revenue totaled $1.26 billion, nearly doubling from $651.6 million at the same time last year. After subtracting commissions that Google paid to other Web sites in its advertising network, the company’s revenue was $794.5 million.

If not for a charge to account for stock options that Google awarded its workers before it went public last August, the company’s earnings would have ranged between $1.39 to $1.46 per share.

By any measure, the results easily topped the 92 cents per share forecast by analysts in a Thomson Financial survey.

Google’s earnings have beat analyst estimates in all three quarters since the company completed its much-anticipated initial public offering of stock.

Bolstered by the company’s stellar financial performance, Google’s stock has more than doubled from the IPO price of $85 per share.

The company announced its latest quarterly results after the stock market closed Thursday. Google’s shares gained $6.12, or 3.1 percent, to close at $204.22 on the Nasdaq Stock Market, then surged another $10.83, or 5.3 percent, in extended trading.

As usual, Google made virtually all of its money from the text-based ads that are related to online search requests. The company gets paid each time one of the links are clicked upon on Google’s home page or hundreds of other sites that display the ads.

“We continue to execute well and we have been able to take full advantage of the growth in online advertising” said Eric Schmidt, Google’s chief executive officer.

Web search leader Google Inc. posted a quarterly profit Thursday that blew past year-earlier results as search advertising continued to grow at a rapid clip.

The results sent shares of Google up about 5 percent in after-hours trade to more than $214.

Google had net income of $369.2 million, or $1.29 a share, in the first quarter, compared with $64.0 million, or 24 cents a share, a year earlier.

Total revenue was $1.26 billion, up from $651.6 million last year. Virtually all of the company’s revenue comes from ads that are triggered when Web users type certain key words into Google’s search engine.

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