Marty Melville | AFP | Getty Images
A high altitude WiFi internet hub Google Project Loon balloon is displayed at the Airforce Museum in Christchurch on June 16, 2013. Google revealed top-secret plans on June 15 to send balloons to the edge of space with the lofty aim of bringing Internet to the two-thirds of the global population currently without web access.
Google parent company Alphabet just spun out two more subsidiary companies.
Project Wing, its drone delivery system, and Project Loon, which makes internet-delivery balloons, both “graduated” from Alphabet’s X research division to become separate, independent businesses.
Loon will be led by executive Alastair Westgarth, while James Ryan Burgess is the new CEO of Wing.
These are the fourth and fifth X businesses to spin out and became their own Alphabet companies, following cyber-security business Chronicle, Waymo and Verily. Alphabet calls these companies “Other Bets.”
“Now that the foundational technology for these projects is built, Loon and Wing are ready to take their products into the world,” X CEO Astro Teller wrote in a blog post on the news, “This is work best done outside of the prototyping-focused environment of X.”
By becoming standalone businesses, Loon and Wing will now be required to more financially accountable than when they were part of the X division. In the first quarter of this year, Alphabet’s “Other Bets” category posted revenue of $150 million on operating losses of $571 million.