If Google’s YouTube were a standalone company, the world’s dominant video-sharing site would be worth more than big blue-chip companies like General Electric, IBM, PepsiCo or Comcast, and would be roughly the same value as media powerhouse Walt Disney Co., according to investment bank Morgan Stanley.
In a note to investors on Friday, the investment bank concluded that YouTube is worth $160 billion, based on the firm’s analysis of its business. Since Google has yet to reveal YouTube’s financial performance, Morgan Stanley’s sum-of-the-parts valuation represents only an estimate (the firm put a 7x multiple on its estimated 2019 revenue for YouTube).
But if that figure is even close, it underscores how the website that Google acquired for $1.65 billion in 2006 has grown into one of the most valuable media entities in the world. And it could become more valuable still.