GOOG or GOOGL: Which Stock Do You Buy? (GOOG, GOOGL) With 288 million A shares outstanding, and 52 million B shares, that means the B share holders get 520 million votes, or 64% of the voting power. The short answer is a stock split, but a longer one is an attempt by the co-founders of Google, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, along with company chairman Eric Schmidt, to retain as much control of the company as possible. Google plans to continue issuing C shares to finance acquisitions and reward employees, so it’s far from clear whether the market will price the C shares at larger discounts in coming years or simply bake in the current difference at a few percentage points. A shares get one vote, C shares get none and B shares get 10 votes. In part to quiet some stockholders’ objections to the original split, Google promised to compensate C class shareholders if the price of their shares fell more than 1% below those of A shares a year after the split. In March 2015 there were some 52 million B shares outstanding, but Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings showed that Brin converted a total of 48,998 B shares to A shares towards the end of April, to be sold over a period of time. There’s little price difference between the two — as of June 2, 2017, it was $996.12 vs. $975.60, respectively — still, what gives? Google split its stock in April 2014, which created the A and C shares. There’s definitely a difference between the price of the two types of Google shares you can buy, though it is relatively small.