Are Super Shares a Good Thing for Google and Facebook Investors?

The pros and cons of super shares to control voting rights by tech giants Google and Facebook.

Apr 6, 2014 at 11:00AM

Few dispute that Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL) or Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) are great companies. Both are revolutionary companies that took vague ideas and turned them into businesses worth more than $100 billion. You just don't see that kind of success every day (or most days, for that matter).

However, as was recently reiterated by Google's stock split earlier this week, both Facebook and Google carry a dirty little secret that's hugely unfair to the average investor -- voting rights.

Hitch a ride with Facebook or Google
Both Google and Facebook have unique share structures, which was part of the genesis of Google's stock split earlier this week. Although it's not talked about all that often, these unique stock structures give Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page, their own special classes of their respective companies' stock that give them an outsized number of votes. This gives the respective sets of founders more than half of the outstanding votes at the companies they created.

In the video below, tech and telecom analyst Andrew Tonner looks at the pros and cons of these special super shares at some of today's most dominant tech companies, and what it means for investors.

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Andrew Tonner has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Facebook, Google (A shares), and Google (C shares). The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook, Google (A shares), and Google (C shares). Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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