Maybe I’m getting older, but I’m pretty sure I remember when a company valuation of $1 billion was a big deal.
I’m not just talking about tech ‘unicorns’ either. I’m talking pre unicorn terminology. I’m talking about the 90s, when companies worth over $1 billion were really big business.
Except today $1 billion seems like a start-up valuation. In fact, there’s a ton of start-ups that aren’t just worth $1 billion, they’re worth more.
These are the unicorns we talk about. The Holy Grail of tech companies.
But I bring this up because for the first time in history — as in quite possibly today — we’re going to get the world’s first public $1 trillion company.
Overnight, Apple released their latest figures. And they beat expectations. That means a tidy little bump higher in their stock price today, most likely.
It’s likely going to push them over their all-time-high. And we think we’ll see Apple with a $1 trillion market cap by the end of the week.
$1 trillion. Just one company.
It seems unbelievable. But the fact is they’ll be the first, and more will follow.
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Was Apple always destined for success?
A friend said to me today that when you look through old Apple numbers, it was obvious even in the 1970s that it was a great company. In Apple’s first year of operations in 1976, it made $174,000 in sales. Six years later it cracked $1 billion.
I did remind him (after I called him Mr Hindsight) that Apple was a basket case for much of the 80s. Yes, they got off to a flier in the late 70s with the Apple I and Apple II. But the Apple III was junk. The Apple Lisa was worse. Even the Macintosh still didn’t really pull Apple out of the doldrums.
And even as late at 1997 Apple was on the verge of bankruptcy.
It wasn’t until the iMac series of computers that things turned around. Likewise, the release of the iPod, the iPod Nano, iPhone, MacBook, iPad and subsequent generations of all of the above was what turned things around.
But I’m of the belief that the truly great companies — the ones that achieve real greatness all need to suffer before they can become great.
There needs to be a period where the market hates you, where the media slams you, where you’re the worst company in the world, in order to rise from it all.
There are varying levels of this, but I think that without some kind of difficulty, companies don’t properly learn how to deal with adversity. That means if and when adversity comes around again, they capitulate instead of bunkering down and forging ahead.
But if the company has the right people, delivers the right tech, at the right time to the right market, then the sky is the limit.
I believe once Apple cracks $1 trillion, others will follow soon after. I think it will be the sign of a new super cycle in tech.
There are a lot of people that big tech like the FAANGs are ‘overheated’. They’re saying there might be a pullback in big tech. But what if they’re incredibly wrong.
Is this the start or the end of the tech boom?
What if this is just the start of even greater gains to be had across the board from the best tech companies on the planet?
What if the direction of tech like augmented reality, the Internet of Things, autonomous systems, blockchain technology, everything on demand and the explosion of subscription business models — is all coming together into one Grand Super Tech Cycle.
I think this is the more likely outcome.
When you look at what’s really going on in these companies, they’re just starting to warm up. They’re not peaking. They’re just getting started.
The next five years are going to forge in history another golden era of revolutionary tech.
I think we’ll see a proliferation of small, revolutionary tech breakthroughs on major markets all over the world. We’ll see companies like Infineon, CEVA, AMD and Energous boom.
These will sit at valuations that the likes of NVIDIA, Intel, Amazon and Alphabet now sit at.
And those FAANGs and BATs (over in China) will be the trillion dollar companies that we once thought were near impossible.
There’s a fair bit of uncertainty and fear in the markets today. Much of it is predicated on geopolitical issues. There’s fear of trade wars, currency wars. There’s fear of all-out war.
But look deeper. Push that aside. What do you see?
I see progress, innovation, breakthroughs. I see massive opportunity in hardware, blockchain, networks and communications, biotech, robotics, autonomous systems, semiconductors, fintech, AI, genetic sciences and cybernetics.
This doesn’t stop because Trump tweets some BS about another world leader. Technological progress never stops. And I think it’s going to push us into a tech Grand Super Cycle.
Editor’s note: The above article is an edited extract from Revolutionary Tech Investor.
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