Google Gaffe Puts Sales Forecast on Web

09 March 2006

The mighty Google has again proved it is merely mortal and as prone to web errors as any other internet giant.

The number one search engine has had to advise investors to disregard an internal financial forecast mistakenly posted on its website.

The notes, which appeared on its investor-relations page last week, among information related to its annual meeting with analysts, projected an increase in advertising sales to $9.5 billion (€7.96bn; £5.46bn).

In a filing to financial regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission, Google says: "These notes were not created for financial planning purposes and should not be regarded as financial guidance."

Comments New York analyst Jordan Rohan: "This is sloppy. This is a particularly glaring mistake and one that requires a real corporate wide tightening of information policies."

The company is famous for refusing to provide financial forecasts but the inadvertent information appears to line up with Wall Street estimates of its projected revenues in 2006.

A Google spokeswoman declined to comment.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff