Google Buys Garage Where It All Started

Internet search leader Google Inc. has added a landmark to its rapidly expanding empire — the Silicon Valley home where co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin rented a garage eight years ago as they set out to change the world.

The Mountain View-based company bought the 1,900-square-foot home in nearby Menlo Park from one of its own employees, Susan Wojcicki, who had agreed to lease her garage for $1,700 per month because she wanted some help paying the mortgage.

Wojcicki, now Google's vice president of product management, didn't work for the company at the time and only knew the Stanford University graduate students because one of her friends had dated Brin.

During Google's five-month history there, the garage became like a second home for Page and Brin.

The entrepreneurs, then just 25, seemed to be always working on their search engine or soaking in the hot tub that still sits on the property. They also had a penchant for raiding Wojcicki's refrigerator — a habit that may have inspired Google to provide a smorgasbord of free food to the 8,000 employees on its payroll.

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