Trending: One year later, Microsoft AI and Research grows to 8k people in massive bet on artificial intelligence

Satya Nadella speaks at Microsoft Ignite 2016 (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Following Microsoft’s $26.2 billion acquisition of LinkedIn, one analyst thinks the Redmond, Wash. tech giant is on pace to become the first tech company to reach a market value of $1 trillion.

Analyst Michael Markowski writes for Equities.com that Microsoft will reach that threshold before other big companies like Amazon, Google, Facebook and Apple. Microsoft will do it by leveraging LinkedIn to become a leader in social media and the emerging crowdfunding industry.

Here are the market caps of these big tech companies as of Monday morning:

A pair of rulings from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission this year opened up crowdfunding by letting companies directly advertise to the public and allowing those who aren’t accredited investors — those making more than $200,000 a year or with a net worth in excess of $1 million — to participate in more types of investments. Markowski predicts that online crowdfunding will be the next technological revolution, on par with the creation of the internet, email, social media, smartphones and apps.

“The public has an insatiable appetite for making small bets and purchasing lottery tickets, etc., that provide the chance to make a big profit,” Markowski wrote. “The millennials will be a good example. Many will want to routinely invest $100 or even less into high-risk ventures that could produce returns of 10X to 100X.”

Microsoft, through LinkedIn, will be able to take advantage of this trend because it has a monopoly on the business social media sphere. Markowski predicts that all the big tech companies will eventually build services to facilitate crowdfunding investments.

In the third year of Satya Nadella’s time as CEO, Microsoft has been trending in the right direction. The company stock hit a an all-time high in October and has continued to climb since then. Microsoft’s cloud platform Azure and its Surface products have helped rebuild the company’s reputation as a tech powerhouse.

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