Google unveils $100m expansion plans

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Google sought to reassure investors over its growth prospects yesterday by saying it aimed to build a turnover of more than $100bn (£57bn) in 2006.

The company, which shocked the market this week by warning of slower revenue growth, unveiled plans to build and develop new sources of revenue while claiming there was huge opportunity to expand its base services within international markets. It said it aimed to build a turnover of more than $100bn in 2006, and the comments were enough to push its shares up 3 per cent to $376.45.

Two days after the chief finance officer George Reyes warned that the company was seeing slower growth from its search-engine revenue, he told analysts and investors meeting in California there was a "deep pipeline of products [and a] powerful self-reinforcing business model". "We believe we are the largest single source of the world's information," he said.

The chief executive Eric Schmidt told the same meeting at Google's Mountain View headquarters that systems put in place would help build $100bn of revenue this year. The company's priorities, he said, included improving the quality of its search and advertising businesses, boosting the size of its audience and expanding its products, services and business partnerships.

He said there was "tremendous room" for improving the quality of internet ads, which would drive sales growth. He added: "It looks to us like international growth is strong and likely to remain so for a very long time." Google's share price has been falling since mid-January when it touched an all-time high of $475.11 a few days before its rival Yahoo! posted earnings which disappointed some Wall Street analysts.

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