It was hard not to feel a bit bad for Yahoo CEO Terry Semel during his Q3 earnings conference call Tuesday. Not only was he reporting Yahoo’s lackluster financial performance, he had a troublesome cough (see Yahoo: We’re still number one!”).
Google CEO Eric Schmidt, by contrast, had the happy task of reporting Google’s latest record breaking financial performance today (see Is Google unstoppable? Q3 record performance defies market conditions), and the pleasure of wishing Omid Kordestani, Google Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Business Development, happy birthday!
The Google management royalty could be heard giddily laughing in celebration upon the conclusion of the public earnings call, in a manner similar to YouTube’s “Chad and Steve” giddily celebrating the union of two Internet “kings” in their YouTube video announcement of their sell-out to Google.
Schmidt began his call with a simple but powerful statement: “Business is very, very good here at Google.” Semel had to begin his call with an acknowledgement: “I am not satisfied with our current financial performance.”
Semel addressed “challenges and opportunities” going forward while Schmidt asserted confidence in the benefits driving “the entire cycle of Google.”
Semel promised to “improve” Yahoo’s performance, Schmidt conveyed he is “very, very pleased” with Google’s performance.
Our results for the third quarter fell short of our initial expectations, and we are lowering our fourth quarter business outlook as well. To be clear, we are continuing to grow our business at a pace many companies would envy, and we continue to lead the industry in key measures of performance -- but that is really not good enough for us.
We are not exploiting our considerable strengths as well as we should be and we are committed to doing better.
What I wanted to do is to finish by saying that we are in many ways crossing into another era here of what it will be possible to do with the Internet. We have gone from web search, various other forms of applications to now literally being able to do business, life, entertainment, especially with the integration of video, on the net. This is a very, very powerful, powerful way in which many, many companies, many, many users, many, many advertisers will use.
The diversity of our approach is one of our strengths, and we intend to keep going and to focus on both more partnerships, more great products, integrated as general features, growing the Company, investing in our capital, and we hope to continue to do very well.
So with that, thank you very much. Thank you for spending so much time. And I do want to finish the call by saying, happy birthday to Omid.