Microsoft briefly reached a global valuation of $3 trillion on Jan. 24, becoming only the second company in history to breach the mark. Its current success has largely been attributed to the rise of general artificial intelligence (AI) technologies and the market boom in the wake of OpenAI’s ChatGPT launching last year.
The Redmond company, as of the time of this article’s publication, is the second most valuable firm in the world. It trails only Apple, who resided at the top spot with a valuation of $3.03 trillion when Microsoft joined it in the triple-trillion club.
On the wings of artificial intelligence
The near-record breaking performance comes as generative artificial intelligence (AI) products and services continue to perform exceptionally well in both consumer and enterprise markets.
Microsoft’s $13 billion dollar investments in OpenAI appear to be the driving force behind the company’s current ascension. Not only has it reported record revenue over the past two quarters, but as Forbes reports, analysts expect it to post another all-time high for sales during its next quarter report — with the named figure being somewhere around $61 billion.
A rising tide amid turbulent seas
While Microsoft and OpenAI enjoy the fruits of their labor, regulators in the U.S., U.K., and Europe are investigating whether the firms’ partnership should be regulated as a de facto merger. Luckily, the Redmond company has plenty of recent experience dealing with contentious merger disputes after its nearly two-year quest to acquire Activision-Blizzard-King ended successfully in Oct. of 2023.
Related: Microsoft CEO calls OpenAI partnership ‘pro-competition’ amid UK, EU merger probes
Impending regulation aside, many of the top moving tech stocks of 2023 and 2024 were AI stocks. Nvidia posted record-highs throughout the year and joined the trillion-dollar-club while Meta and Apple also posted all-time highs during the period. Meta also briefly crossed a trillion-dollar valuation recently, the first time it’s done so since 2021.
Industry experts are still waiting to see what Apple does next. Rumors continue to swirl that the Cupertino company has plans to unveil major AI updates to Siri, iOS, and iPhone soon, but there’s nothing official to report yet.