Google Is Ready To Start Buying Companies Again

CEO Eric Schmidt tells Reuters that Google (NSDQ: GOOG) is once again looking to make about about one purchase a month. And, indeed, Google has been on that pace since August, when it agreed to buy video compression firm On2 for $106.5 million — ending a streak of 11 months in which the company had not made an acquisition. Last week, it followed up the On2 buy with the purchase of reCaptcha, a startup that creates automated messages — or “captchas” — that users type to prove they are not bots.

There was also rampant speculation — since refuted — that Google was in talks to purchase Brightcove. Schmidt doesn’t tell Reuters what Google is looking for specifically, but he does says it’s likely that Google will be buying up small companies; he says larger purchases are “unpredictable.”

The comments come as other internet companies are also increasing the pace of their acquisitions. Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO), for instance, hadn’t purchased a company in more than a year when it bought e-mail startup Xoopit in July; since then, it has also picked up Arab portal Maktoob for about $75 million.