Google Spent $951 Million on Data Centers in 4Q

Google invested nearly a billion dollars in its Internet infrastructure in the last quarter of 2011, recording capital expenditures (CapEx) of $951 million. The increase is likely tied to a significant expansion of the company's global data center network.

Google invested nearly a billion dollars in its Internet infrastructure in the last quarter of 2011, recording capital expenditures (CapEx) of $951 million. Google's CapEx spending was about $271 million more than in the third quarter of 2011, when it invested $680 million in its infrastructure.

The increase is likely due to early work on a significant expansion of Google's international data center network. In recent weeks the company has announced four new data center projects, including three new facilities in three markets in Asia (Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong) and a new data center in Dublin.

Here's a look at Google's quarter-by-quarter spending on capital expenditures.

  • 1Q 2007: $597 million
  • 2Q 2007: $575 million
  • 3Q 2007: $553 million
  • 4Q 2007: $678 million
  • 1Q 2008: $842 million
  • 2Q 2008: $698 million
  • 3Q 2008: $452 million
  • 4Q 2008:$368 million
  • 1Q 2009: $263 million
  • 2Q 2009: $139 million
  • 3Q 2009: $186 million
  • 4Q2009: $221 million
  • 1Q2010: $239 million
  • 2Q2010: $476 million
  • 3Q2010: $757 million
  • 4Q2010: $2.55 Billion
  • 1Q2011: $890 million
  • 2Q2011: $917 million
  • 3Q2011: $680 million
  • 4Q2011: $951 million

A capital expenditure is an investment in a long-term asset, typically physical assets such as buildings or machinery. Google says the majority of its capital investments are for IT infrastructure, including data enters, servers, and networking equipment. In the past the company's CapEx spending has closely tracked its data center construction projects, each of which requires between $200 million and $600 million in investment.

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