Today Yahoo is worth $36 billion. In its quarter ending 12/31/03 Yahoo made $75 million in after-tax income on revenue of about $664 million. Very impressive.
Today Google filed for its IPO. In its quarter ending 3/31/04, Google made $64 million in after-tax income on revenue of about $390 million. More impressive.
I love Google. I've been reading the S-1. I love that the entire IPO will be done through an open auction. I love the founders' philosophy: the "don't be evil" by letting commercial interests skew natural search results, the idea of bridging the "digital divide" by offering free services (including gmail), the Google foundation which will get about 1% of Google equity, the long-term view they will take in managing a public company.
As a start-up company, the technology bets you make can sometimes make or break your company.
Back in 1990 when I co-founded Infobases, we bet that the Folio VIEWs search engine would help us create better CD-ROM products for our customers than other search engines like AskSam, WordCruncher, or Dataware. Our bet was a good one. Folio VIEWs was perfect for us. Our develop costs were low; our royalties were reasonable; and our customers loved our products. Within a few years we were generating nearly $4 million in revenue.