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Google to be part of new holding company Alphabet

Google, which has been expanding far beyond its original business of internet search advertising, is changing its operating structure by creating a new holding company called Alphabet.

The company says its new structure will give more independence to many of its wide-ranging and ambitious projects.

Under the plan, Alphabet will comprise the core Google business, including internet search, mapping and YouTube, along with newer businesses that will be managed separately, such as Google Fiber, Nest and the investment arm Google Ventures.

Google CEO Larry Page will become chief executive of Alphabet, with his co-founder Sergey Brin serving as president. Long-time Google executive Sundar Pichai, who has taken on increasingly important roles at the company in recent years, will be CEO of the core Google business.

The change may give investors a clearer picture of how much Google is spending on some of its newer ventures, like its effort to build a self-driving car, develop a glucose-sensing contact lens or install high-speed Internet fiber networks in a number of US cities, said Colin Gillis, an investment analyst at BGC Partners.

But it may not signal much change in the current management structure, since Mr Pichai has already been overseeing many of Google's core operations, Mr Gillis said.

Google's new chief financial officer Ruth Porat will hold the same title for both Google and Alphabet. Once the reorganisation is complete, the company says its two existing classes of publicly-traded stock will continue on the Nasdaq exchange under the ticker symbols GOOG and GOOGL.

The Mountain View, California, company's stock was up about 5% in after-hours trading following the announcement .

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