Google Sales, Profit Growth Continues

NEW YORK Google continued its sharp growth trajectory, reporting sharply higher first-quarter revenue and profits.

The Mountain View, Calif., search giant said revenue was $1.26 billion, up 93 percent from the first quarter in 2004. Excluding revenue shared with search distribution partners, Google’s sales were $794 million. Google’s net income for the fourth quarter was $369 million, or $1.29 per share, compared to $64 million a year earlier.

Google’s Q1 results improved on the holiday quarter, which tends to be stronger. Sales, excluding revenue shared with partners, were up 21 percent sequentially. Net income was up 80 percent.

“This was a very strong quarter for Google,” CEO Eric Schmidt said in a statement. “We continue to execute well and we have been able to take full advantage of the growth in online advertising.”

Google generated $657 million of its revenue from advertising run on its own sites and $584 million from those in its network. Advertising on Google sites grew faster than its AdSense partners. Google sites’ revenue was up 116 percent year over year, while AdSense revenue was up 75 percent.

The strong sales and profit growth echoes a solid fourth quarter reported earlier this week by Yahoo, which said it experienced a strong demand for both search and display advertising.

Keeping with its practice, Google did not provide future financial forecasts.