Even when you’re expecting a pretty amazing financial performance — as just about everyone (including me) was from Google’s latest quarter — it’s still something to see a company that is firing on pretty well all cylinders and has a commanding share of the market it operates in. I expect that watching Microsoft in its early years was very similar, as it came to dominate the desktop operating-system business and turned into a gigantic cash-manufacturing machine.
I know that there are many things that could happen to derail the Google train: online advertising could go soft, click fraud could become a bigger issue, etc., etc. It’s not as though bigger companies haven’t suddenly found themselves on the wrong side of a curve before. It could happen to Google.
At the moment, however, the company is at the top of its game — it’s in a dominant position in a rapidly-growing market, and despite having $15-billion or so in revenue, it is still growing at double-digit rates every quarter. That means it could very soon be a $30-billion company, and then people who thought $500 a share was too expensive are probably going to feel very foolish.