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Plenty of companies have seen their product’s name become a vernacular noun, but Google (and its services) has become a verb: i.e., “I googled it.” There may be other search engines and browsers, but Google has an enormous chunk of market share, holding 85 to 92 percent, utterly dominating the market. If there is a company that everyone uses, this is it.

Started as a Stanford University graduate student project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in the mid-1990s, its original name, “BackRub” (which the company now acknowledges was not a good choice), was changed to Google, a variation on “googol”—the number one followed by 100 zeroes—representing the number of choices the search engine would be giving you. Google Inc. officially launched in 1998, and expanded quickly after that, creating and releasing Google News in 2002, Gmail in 2004, Google Maps in 2005, Google Chrome in 2008, and many more globally utilized products since then.

Working at Google has gotten high marks from all quarters, and sometimes it seems like the company goes to insane lengths to keep employees happy, including the unheard-of decision to include a death benefit: If a U.S. employee passes away, the surviving spouse or domestic partner will receive a check for 50% of deceased’s salary every year for the next decade. Google can be extremely selective in hiring, and it is. The company receives about two million job applications annually, and only about 0.5% get hired. So, while it only takes the best of the best, Google does make its jobs worth the competition.

Google

Googleplex
1600 Amphitheatre Pkwy
Mountain View, CA 94043
Phone: (978) 897-0880

Firm Stats

CEO: Sundar Pichai

Major Office Locations

Nearly every major U.S. city

Major Departments & Practices

Engineering & Technology
Sales, Service & Support
Marketing & Communications
Design
Business Strategy
Finance
Legal
People
Facilities