Wednesday 21 February 2018

Google chief Larry Page to miss annual developers’ conference

Larry Page
Larry Page

Emma Barnett

LARRY Page, Google’s chief executive and co-founder, is to miss I/O, the company’s annual developers’ conference, next week because he has lost his voice.

The major event, which lasts three days and happens once a year in San Francisco, is a highlight of the Google calendar, and Page’s absence will be felt by all.

The 39 year-old chief executive, known for his reticence when it comes to public speaking, also missed Google’s annual stockholder meeting yesterday because of his voice problem.

Eric Schmidt, Google’s executive chairman and former chief executive, was left to explain his absence to shareholders and break the news that Page is likely to miss Google I/O and also possibly the company’s quarterly earnings call next month.

He said that Page would continue as chief executive while he recovers.

Google declined to comment further about the exact nature of Page’s condition.

At the annual shareholders’ meeting, Google approved the creation of a new class of non-voting stock suggested earlier this year and designed to preserve the power of the company’s co-founders – Page and Sergey Brin.

The move is not unusual for the latest generation of technology companies – in which the trend has been for founders to remain running the business and eventually taking it public - instead of selling out.

When Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder and chief, filed the company’s S-1 filing earlier this year, ahead of its impending flotation, a clause was added to protect his leadership and to grant the 28-year-old the atypical power to name his successor if he still controls the company when he dies.

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