Google, which is based in Mountain View, Calif., did not say when the stock split will occur. It first needs shareholder approval in June, though that's expected because Page, Brin and Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt have most of the voting power and support the plan.
When the split happens, the value of existing shares will be split into two, so half remains with the existing Class A shares and the remainder will be with the new Class C shares.
Investors will have twice the number of shares than before, but the total value and voting power won't change. In other words, 100 shares worth a total of $60,000 will become 200 shares still worth $60,000 and carrying 100 votes. The new class of shares will get its own ticker symbol. Stock in the two classes will trade independently.
"It's important to bear in mind that this proposal will only have an effect on governance over the very long term," Page and Brin wrote their letter to investors. "It's just that since we know what we want to do, there's no reason to delay the decision."
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.