In the last year, we’ve seen an explosion in mega-cap tech stocks. Not that long ago, the U.S. didn’t have any companies in the trillion-dollar club. Now, that’s changed drastically thanks to FAANG.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) went even further, now commanding market capitalizations north of $2 trillion. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL, NASDAQ:GOOG) sit comfortably above $1.5 trillion. Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) recently slipped below the $1 trillion market, but was the fifth addition to the club not long ago.
That said, there are a handful of other companies that have the potential to reach this milestone as well. The trillion-dollar club is not easy to join, but it’s possible. With a strong brand, solid growth and powerful moat — just look at the names in the club already — and it’s possible.
Let’s look at a handful of stocks that could join the trillion-dollar club by the end of the decade.
- Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA)
- Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
- Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A, NYSE:BRK.B)
- Visa (NYSE:V)
- PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL)
- Salesforce (NYSE:CRM)
- Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
- Shopify (NYSE:SHOP)
Stocks With Trillion-Dollar Club Potential: Nvidia (NVDA)
Current Market Cap: $554 billion
Nvidia isn’t the most valuable company on this list by market cap, but that doesn’t mean it won’t get to a $1 trillion market cap.
I have been a long-time bull on Nvidia and even though I said it was a “steal” below $200 last year ($50 adjusted for the split), doesn’t mean I’m not optimistic any more. In fact, I still believe Nvidia has plenty of upside potential.
The reason why is simple: The company is building the backbone of the tech sector.
Whether it’s a datacenter, artificial intelligence and machine learning, gaming, graphics, supercomputing, drones, robotics, autonomous driving, cloud computing — you name it and Nvidia has its hands in it.
The company makes savvy acquisitions and continues to generate strong, secular growth. Working with the above technologies will ensure that that growth continues too. Not to mention that Nvidia has been blowing estimates completely out of the water when it comes to both revenue and earnings growth.
Shareholders have to be happy with this one. With its long runway in growth, I expect Nvidia to have a runway to a $1 trillion market cap.
Current Market Cap: $865 billion
It’s hard to believe how close Tesla is to a $1 trillion market cap, sitting above $800 billion as of mid-October. Many will pull their hair out at that situation, given it’s got a higher market cap than most of the traditional automakers combined. That’s Toyota (NYSE:TM), General Motors (NYSE:GM), Ford (NYSE:F), Honda (NYSE:HMC) and others.
The move in the stock price is mesmerizing and impressive. While it seems hard to believe that Tesla could move higher, we’re not that far from hitting the $1 trillion mark. In fact, we only need a 20% rally from here.
That would send the stock to new all-time highs, which again, seems difficult in the current climate. However, Tesla stock has actually been trading really well lately.
With its culmination of EVs and energy products, I can certainly see a path to $1 trillion, even if many investors do not believe that Tesla deserves it.
Stocks With Trillion-Dollar Club Potential: Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A, BRK.B)
Current Market Cap: $640.7 billion (BRK.A), $639.9 billion (BRK.B)
Nvidia is an often discussed name and Tesla is always in the news. But Berkshire Hathaway seems to fly under the radar. That’s despite it sporting a huge market cap.
Unfortunately, the company won’t always have Warren Buffett at the helm. However, the company has a succession plan in place for when that time comes. In his time running the company though, Buffett has amassed an enormous portfolio of companies.
Berkshire has a massive position in Apple, owning a 5% stake in the company worth about $130 billion. That’s about triple the company’s next largest position, which is Bank of America (NYSE:BAC). Remember, Buffett stepped in and took a huge stake in the bank back during the credit crisis.
The portfolio has 26 holdings with a stake worth $1 billion or more. Five of those stakes top $10 billion, while four of those holdings top $20 billion. In all, Berkshire’s portfolio tops $300 billion.
So where’s the rest of the company’s value coming from? The company owns a swath of private companies, including GEICO, Duracell, Dairy Queen, Precision Castparts and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway.
Oh yeah, and let’s not forget the $144 billion in cash and equivalents the company held as of the most recent quarter.
Current Market Cap: $508.7 billion
Visa was one of my favorite holdings about 10 years ago. When I was writing about Future Blue Chips — the website I run — this was a top candidate. It surprisingly received a lot of pushback. Can you guess why?
If you said the price-to-earnings ratio, you’re right!
A lot of investors couldn’t look beyond the current year — or worse, the prior year — and break away from this very basic valuation measure. The P/E ratio is a good back-of-the-envelope way to calculate a quick valuation. But it works better on certain businesses than others. For Visa, it didn’t work so well.
It didn’t make sense to call the stock overvalued when we look at what exactly this business is. For starters, we’re in the midst of a long-term secular move away from cash and checks and toward debit and credit purchases. Additionally, the rise of e-commerce has made credit and debit transactions more dominant and the pandemic only accelerated these trends.
Beyond that though, the profitability here is insane.
Before the Covid-19 disruption, Visa sported gross profit margins north of 80% and profit margin north of 52.5%. Over time, we should see the business get back toward those levels. In fact, it’s not far from getting there now.
Stocks With Trillion-Dollar Club Potential: PayPal (PYPL)
Current Market Cap: $315 billion
PayPal would need to more than triple in the long term to hit the $1 trillion mark. There’s one thing that all the companies in the trillion-dollar club have in common: multiple moats.
Among other units, Apple has the iPhone, Mac and Services. Amazon has e-commerce, AWS and advertising. Alphabet has Google search, cloud computing and YouTube. Facebook has its flagship platform, Instagram and WhatsApp.
For PayPal, the company never would have hit its trillion-dollar milestone by just being the payment provider for eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY).
We just talked about online sales with Visa and that’s helping drive PayPal too. Digital sales are lending a hand as well and now the company is involved in facilitating crypto trading. Next may be brokerage offerings.
Analysts expect more than 20% revenue growth this year, next year and 2023. Likely beyond that as well. If PayPal keeps growing like that, its market cap should continue higher as well.
Current Market Cap: $285 billion
With its sub-$300 billion market cap, Salesforce has a ways to go before hitting $1 trillion. However, the company continues to execute incredibly well.
It doesn’t seem like the market was a big fan of Salesforce acquiring Slack for more than $27.5 billion. The stock had recently hit all-time highs, but from the second the company mentioned that deal, the stock price has struggled.
While it’s been finding its groove again lately, I don’t think it’s time to start doubting the company. It’s up 800% in the last decade and 6,600% in the last 20 years.
Even though doubters continue to critique the valuation and as analysts expect growth to slow at some point, management continues to raise guidance. In fact, it did so just last month (in September 2021).
Like PayPal, analysts expect several strong years out of Salesforce and should it continue to grow, it’s not hard to see how this could be a $400 billion to $500 billion company in a few years. Give it to the end of the decade and a spot in the trillion-dollar club may be on the table.
Stocks With Trillion-Dollar Club Potential: Alibaba (BABA)
Current Market Cap: $455 billion
This one is certainly the most controversial pick on the list. Here’s the thing about Alibaba though: It has a great business and a big market cap. However, its biggest risk comes from Chinese regulators.
The company currently commands a $455 billion market cap and is down more than 50% from its highs in Q4, 2020. The decimation has been tough to watch, as nothing has worsened at Alibaba on a fundamental basis.
Chinese regulators cracked down on the Ant IPO in October 2020. Alibaba began to stumble then too, as it has a one-third stake in the company. That was the beginning of many regulatory issues for the company and for Chinese companies in general.
The Chinese government isn’t a body with predictable actions, so Chinese companies can carry a larger risk. Down here at these prices though, that risk may be fully accounted for — but unfortunately we can’t rule out new lows. We just can’t.
At its height in 2020, Alibaba commanded an $850 billion market cap, a stone’s throw from $1 trillion.
If the regulatory hurdles fade going into next year, it’s possible Alibaba stock comes roaring back to life. If that happens, $1 trillion is likely to happen much sooner than 2030.
Current Market Cap: $182 billion
Shopify is the smallest name on this list. Because of its valuation, it too is a controversial pick. I remember writing about this one in late 2019, saying that although the valuation makes my stomach churn a bit, there’s no denying how great of a business this company is running.
It’s changing the way e-commerce works and in so many ways Shopify is giving Amazon a run for its money. Not necessarily in a direct competition kind of way (thankfully), but in a “we’re turning e-commerce on its head” kind of way.
It’s a break from the traditional approach and so far that’s proving to be quite lucrative.
In any regard, I said that, despite the valuation, I’m a buyer of Shopify because in 10 years time, I could see the valuation topping $120 billion. Obviously that proved conservative, but it shows the necessary mentality of buying a stock like Shopify. At the time, it was a $35 billion company.
The growth is forecast to continue too, with the “worst” annual revenue growth outlook in the next three years set at 34% growth. That will have to be the case to justify its 28 times forward revenue valuation.
In eight years from now, we can’t rule out that Shopify is a five-bagger and change from here.
On the date of publication, Bret Kenwell held a long position in NVDA. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Bret Kenwell is the manager and author of Future Blue Chips and is on Twitter @BretKenwell.