Google, which is expanding its Irish headcount to 1,400 people, last night reported revenues of US$3.2bn for the fourth quarter, up 67pc on the same quarter a year earlier and a 19pc increase on the third quarter.
For the fourth quarter Google recorded a net income of US$1.03bn, up from US733m last year. Operating income was US$1.03bn, or 33pc of revenues, compared with US$931m a year ago.
Google said that its traffic acquisition costs (TAC), the portion of revenues shared with its partners, increased to US$976m in the fourth quarter, up from US$825m in the third quarter. TAC as a percentage of advertising revenue was 31pc in the third and fourth quarters.
Google-owned sites generated revenues of US$1.98bn, or 62pc of total revenues, up 80pc on the previous year.
Google’s partern sites generated revenues through the AdSense programme of US$1.2bn, or 37pc of total revenues. This was a 50pc increase on last year.
The company’s revenues from outside the US contributed to 44pc of total revenues in the fourth quarter, compared with 38pc a year earlier.
Aggregate paid-clicks, which include clicks related to ads served on Google sites and amongst its AdSense partners, increased 61pc over the fourth quarter of 2005.
“Our impressive performance in the fourth quarter demonstrates the continuing strength of our business model across Google properties and those of our partners,” said Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google.
“Our growing organisation allows us to deliver ever increasing amounts of information and content to our users both through investments in search and ads as well as through strategic partnerships,” Schmidt added.
The news of the strong results was marred by a decision by EU trademark body the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market to reject Google’s appeal to win the right to register its Gmail email product as a European trademark.
Instead German venture capitalist Daniel Giersch, who held the trademark for six years, since he founded a same day postal service to rival Deutsche Post.
As a result German internet users cannot sign up for gmail.com email accounts but must opt instead for googlemail.com.
By John Kennedy