Check out our other stories on Trending Thoughts. Top five Tech Companies. As it usually goes with all businesses around the free-market world, big corps have two options: grow or perish. And the way to growth is a one-way street. The name of the game: Mergers and acquisitions. Since the day they were founded, the big five tech companies have acquired numerous companies and made them subsidiaries. For example, Hotmail being part of Microsoft is pretty much a given. But did you know that Minecraft, the gaming phenomenon, is also under a Microsoft division? What about IMDb or Twitch being part of Amazon?
Founded: February 4, 2004
Revenue: $55.838 billion (2018)
Employees: 30,275 (2018)
Alexa rank: 3 (March 26, 2019)
The #1 social media platform is not just that anymore. Facebook had initially launched under the name ‘FaceMash’. A little later however they changed the name to ‘TheFacebook’, only to realize that they probably won’t succeed as a rock band and dropped the ‘The’. With more than 2.3 billion active users today, its growth doesn’t stop in its user base. Since its founding, Facebook has been very aggressive with its acquisitions, and it has now become one of the big five tech companies. Despite being only 15 years old, Facebook has purchased over 70 companies. The biggest of these purchases was WhatsApp, with $19 billion being the price of the acquisition.
Founded: July 5, 1994
Revenue: $232.887 billion (2018)
Employees: 613,300 (2018)
Alexa rank: 10 (March 26, 2019)
As the story goes, Amazon started as an eCommerce store selling books in the mid-’90s. Nowadays, it is the biggest retailer globally, surpassing Walmart. It’s also the world’s largest internet company by revenue. The multinational has gone beyond the eCommerce industry, and it now focuses on artificial intelligence and cloud computing as well. It’s clear that no market is safe from the ever-expanding empire of one of these big five tech companies.
Founded: April 1, 1976
Revenue: $265.595 billion (2018)
Employees: 132,000 (2018)
Alexa rank: 58 (March 26, 2019)
With the exception of Beats Electronics in 2014, all purchases from Apple are counted in the millions, not billions. In contrast with the rest of the big five tech companies, Apple prefers acquiring small companies which can easily integrate into its line of products. Apart from the top five Apple’s acquisitions that follow, other common business categories are software, machine learning, and semiconductors. Today, rumors say that investors of the tech company want Apple to do a big acquisition; the names Netflix, Sonos, and Activision Blizzard are those that are heard the most.
Apple’s investment in the music industry is now pretty much a given. Hence the largest acquisition for the company, to this day, comes as no surprise. Also, Apple’s successful marriage of technology with culture was what had inspired Beats Electronics since the beginning. Apple acquiring Beats was a vital solution to its revenue growth, as it had slowed sharply in the last few years. ‘Beats by Dr. Dre’ price tag at $450 and manufacturing cost at just $14 to make, meant a high-profit margin. This acquisition also managed to make Dr.Dre the first ‘hip-hop billionaire.
Founded: April 4, 1975
Revenue: $110.36 billion (2018)
Employees: 134,944 (2018)
Alexa rank: 37 (March 26, 2019)
The oldest of the big five tech companies, Microsoft Corporation, made its acquisition debut in 1983. It started with a company best known for its developers who made what is now Microsoft PowerPoint. Since then, the MS Corporation has purchased an average of six companies a year. All these years, through its successful strategic acquisitions and merges, Microsoft has prevailed and continues to deepen its dominance in many technology fields.
Founded: September 4, 1998
Revenue: $39.120 billion (2018)
Employees: 98,771 (2018)
Alexa rank: 1 (March 26, 2019)
Google had a motto for its corporate code of conduct: “Don’t be evil”. If it had to go for another one, it would most likely be “If you can’t create it, buy it”. Google’s list of acquisitions is a long list indeed, counting more than 200 purchases since 1998 when it was founded. Google may have started as a search engine, but today it is a giant in the technology industry and one of the top five tech companies.