Tech Stock Themes: Amazon.com, Inc. Vs. Microsoft Corporation, Walmart Stores, Inc

Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) became a major standout tech theme in 2017, even overshadowing the rest of the FANG names (Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google/Alphabet). Most analysts generally agree that the Amazon stock theme will continue, although some include it on their list of 2018 tech stock themes because of its dominance in e-commerce, while others focus on the cloud.

This is a multi-part series on 2018 tech stock themes. Click here for Part 1 On the FANG/ FAAMG stocks.

amazon stock

Amazon stock: battle on multiple frontlines

It’s a tale of one stock with two themes, two competitors and two frontlines. Amazon versus Walmart on one hand and versus Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) on the other. Few companies can handle one massive battle, let alone two wars in two completely different industries, which is probably why investors are so enchanted with Amazon stock.

GBH Insights analyst Daniel Ives included Amazon stock on his list of tech themes because of both battles. He lists the biggest concern for Amazon stock in 2018 as competition: will it be the year Amazon finally gets a dent in its armor?

The so-called “Amazon flywheel” leaves a lot for investors to like: an “iron grip on e-commerce spending”; Prime memberships; Whole Foods and groceries; and more. He feels the broad diversification from e-commerce to the cloud is smart, but he notes that there is an inherent risk in the wide diversification strategy practiced by Amazon as it moves past groceries and into the pharmacy business in 2018.

Looking into the coming year, Amazon is pushing toward further diversification. The company entered the grocery space in a big way by acquiring Whole Foods, and 2018 appears to be the year it gets into the drugstore business.

Amazon versus Microsoft

There’s also the Prime streaming business, which has been going for years and gradually picking up steam along the way. It could even pick up more steam in 2018, as the company recently filed for a trademark for “AmazonTube,” which triggered speculations that the company could be planning a YouTube-like service. More attention is also being paid to Amazon’s digital ad business for 2018, in which it faces two dominant players along yet another major frontline: Facebook and Google.

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