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The subsidiary company had spent more than a decade attempting to use tethered windmill drones to generate electricity.
Makani started in 2006 and was acquired in 2013. At Alphabet, it was developed within the X "moonshot lab" before being spun out as its own company in 2019. By last fall, the company had begun demonstrating its "energy kites" and said it was already planning its first commercial product. Now, Alphabet appears to be trimming some fat: its non-Google companies, lumped together as "Other Bets" in its earnings, lost a combined $4.8 billion in 2019, according to the FT.
Mike Murphy ( @mcwm) is the director of special projects at Protocol, focusing on the industries being rapidly upended by technology and the companies disrupting incumbents. Previously, Mike was the technology editor at Quartz, where he frequently wrote on robotics, artificial intelligence, and consumer electronics.