Google Electric Company - Core Competency?

Larry Dignan on

Wrote a blog about the issue of Google getting into the energy business. This somehow seems like it is in Google's DNA when faced with make vs buy, they favor make.  They've done this with their OS and Servers they run their platform on.  Now, they are extending out to make their own electricity.

This reminds of Microsoft's Keyboard and Mice business. Microsoft long time ago diversified into making their own keyboards and mice, and even though it has done well over the years, it never brings in the margins Microsoft gets in its software business. If Google does sell energy, it's margins are going to be effected, and shareholders will ask that the energy business be spun off.  Creating the Google Electric company.

And this green effort is taking up management time. In a statement, Page, Google president of products, said:

“We have gained expertise in designing and building large-scale, energy-intensive facilities by building efficient data centers. We want to apply the same creativity and innovation to the challenge of generating renewable electricity at globally significant scale, and produce it cheaper than from coal. There has been tremendous work already on renewable energy. Technologies have been developed that can mature into industries capable of providing electricity cheaper than coal. Solar thermal technology, for example, provides a very plausible path to providing renewable energy cheaper than coal. We are also very interested in further developing other technologies that have potential to be cost-competitive and green. We are aware of several promising technologies, and believe there are many more out there.”