Included in Google's Q1 earnings statement last April was a letter expressing the company's desire to split its stock, but in a way that is slightly unusual. Today at its annual shareholder meeting, Google stockholders approved the split. Instead of a standard 2-for-1 split, the company wants to give existing shareholders one extra non-voting share instead of two regular, voting shares. This kind of stock split would ensure that current shareholders would maintain their current levels of voting power — and the majority of voting power sits with Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who combined control 56 percent.
In other words, it's not a surprise at all that the motion passed. Last April, Page and Brin defended the move by saying that "this founder-led approach is in the best interests of Google, our shareholders and our users." The AP reports that Google ins't instituting the stock split right away, as there's a lawsuit pending to block it. Speaking of Google CEO Larry Page, he didn't attend the stockholder meeting and won't attend Google I/O next week — apparently his voice has gone out. Get well soon, Larry, and maybe next time space out all those interviews a bit more.