Eric SchmidtGoogle chairman and former CEO Eric Schmidt just filed a plan to sell almost $1.5 billion worth of Google stock.

Schmidt, now Google’s executive chairman, intends to stagger the sales of the stock over a one-year period. Google disclosed Schmidt’s plans in a Friday regulatory filing. The company said Schmidt, 56, is trying to raise some money and diversify his investment portfolio.

If all 1.5 billion shares of stock are sold, that will reduce Schmidt’s stake in Google from 2.8 per cent to 2.1 per cent.

This plan would lead to Eric reducing his stake to 2.1% of outstanding capital stock and approximately 7.3% of the voting power of outstanding capital stock. As of December 31, 2011, Eric beneficially owned approximately 9.1 million shares of Class A and Class B common stock, which represented approximately 2.8% of outstanding capital stock and approximately 9.7% of the voting power of outstanding capital stock.

Google said this pre-arranged trading plan was adopted in order to allow Eric to sell a portion of stock as part of long-term strategy for individual asset diversification and liquidity.