In this article, we will take a look at the 15 Most Valuable App Companies. You can skip our detailed analysis of the app industry and trends and head to the 5 Most Valuable App Companies.
The mobile app industry animates the smartphone revolution that is currently unfolding worldwide. Apps is what makes our smartphones smart. They are the software which power the over 3.5 billion smartphones in the world. Billions of people use mobile apps for entertainment, time and money management, video streaming, education, chat, fitness and just about everything you can imagine. Name a thing and I'd tell you: there's an app for that!. According to a market analysis report published by Grand View Research, the global mobile application market was valued at $154 billion in 2019, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.5% expected through 2027. This is due to the continuously rising demand for smartphones which leads to an increase in data usage and internet penetration.
Mobile Apps Industry's Resilience and Growth Prospects
The COVID-19 pandemic actually helped the mobile app industry. In the second quarter of 2020, mobile app usage jumped 40% year over year based on a report from App Annie, recording over 200 billion hours spent in April. On top of that, consumer spending on apps was recorded at $27 billion and smartphone downloads surpassed 35 billion for the first time.
The quarantine brought more traffic to online shopping apps such as Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) — 41 million downloads — and Walmart (NYSE: WMT) — 34 million downloads — as reported by Apptopia. As schools were forced to shut down, education apps made it possible for millions of students to continue learning remotely. Alphabet's (NASDAQ: GOOG) Google Classroom became the most downloaded learning app worldwide with over 28.2 million downloads in April 2020. Social media and entertainment-related apps also thrived during the pandemic and ByteDance's short-video sharing app TikTok surprised the world with over 850 million downloads in 2020. Mobile gaming saw the highest demand during the pandemic compared to other apps, with 14 billion game downloads. According to data from analytics company Newzoo, global gaming revenue rose 13.3% in 2020, outperforming both PC and console gaming.
Copyright: prykhodov / 123RF Stock Photo
Should You Invest in Apps Stocks?
Mobile app companies are ripe for investment as they are foraying into futuristic technologies. As internet connectivity and mobile penetration increase, more and more people will use smartphone apps. This will bring huge revenues for innovative mobile app companies.
Facebook recently unveiled "Learning from Videos," a new AI initiative that integrates artificial intelligence to understand and learn audio, textual, and visual representations of public user videos on the social media site. One of the objectives of the project is to work on developing Facebook AI systems related to content recommendations and policy enforcement. On the other hand, Microsoft is spending $200 million in expanding its data centers to upscale its cloud service, Microsoft Azure. The biggest tech stocks are pushing investments in machine learning, artificial intelligence, and cloud systems to improve their mobile app services.
Trends like AI, IoT, mobile wallets, cryptocurrency, augmented reality, telehealth and freelancing will give a boost to mobile app companies in the future.
The Most Valuable App Companies
We ranked the 15 most valuable app companies based on market cap. As you go through the list, you will notice that most of the companies are engaged in the mobile gaming sector as it has the largest market share when it comes to mobile applications.
15. GLU Mobile Inc (NASDAQ: GLUU)
Market cap: $2.17 billion
San Francisco-based mobile game maker Glu Mobile Inc ranks 15 on our list of the 15 most valuable app companies. The company designs mobile games across different genres such as sports, food, celebrity, and action. One of its most popular games is "Cooking Dash" with over 10 million downloads since its launch in 2015. Glu Mobile also develops and publishes third-party brands including "Kim Kardashian: Hollywood", "Kendall & Kylie", and "Gordon Ramsay DASH".
Based on the company's full-year 2020 report, Glu Mobile earned $540.5 million in revenue, up 31% from the previous year. Sports game maker Electronic Arts Inc announced earlier this year that it will be acquiring Glu Mobile Inc for $2.4 billion to attract more female gamers. Shares of GLUU surged by 146% over the past twelve months.
14. Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co (NYSE: HPE)
Market cap: $20.57 billion
Ranking 14th on our list of the most valuable app companies is a major tech player Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). Although HPE doesn't publish applications aside from its networking solution apps, HPE made it to our list as it helps millions of businesses build accessible apps for its consumers. HPE provides data analytics, security software, and SaaS-based interfaces to some of the major mobile app companies.
In the first quarter of 2021, HPE earned net revenue of $6.8 billion. Shares of HPE increased by 60.34% over the past twelve months.
Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com
13. Electronic Arts Inc (NASDAQ: EA)
Market cap: $37.5 billion
California-based Electronic Arts (EA) is one of the biggest mobile game developers in the world and ranks 13th on the list of the 15 most valuable app companies. The company offers a wide range of mobile games available on the App Store and Google Play including "The Sims Mobile", "Battlefield", "FIFA", and "Need for Speed." "The Sims 4" has over 33 million players in December 2020. EA also designs and publishes games across other platforms such as tablets and PCs.
In fiscal third-quarter results in 2021, EA earned net cash of $1.124 billion. EA has been in the mood for an acquisition spree to expand its market in the gaming industry. It initiated a $1.2 billion acquisition of the UK-based car racing game developer Codemasters in February 2021 and also bought Glu Mobile Inc for $2.4 billion. Shares of EA increased by 34.44% over the past twelve months.
12. Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp. (NASDAQ: CTSH)
Market cap: $41.26 billion
Headquartered in New Jersey, Cognizant is one of the biggest tech companies specializing in IT consulting and tech-related services. Cognizant is one of the most valuable app companies as it provides business-centric application services such as high-speed application development and application-led cloud migration. On top of that, Cognizant also offers IT support for other sectors such as healthcare and financial.
Based on the full-year report of the company in 2020, CTSH earned $4.2 billion in the fourth quarter and $16.7 billion for the fiscal year. Its products and resources segment accounted for approximately 22.7% of the total revenue. Shares of CTSH increased by 47.8% over the past twelve months.
11. Vivendi SE ADR (OTC: VIVHY)
Market value: $37 billion
French entertainment company Vivendi ranks 11th on the list of the 15 most valuable app companies. The company develops and publishes video games through its subsidiary Gameloft SE. Gameloft produces adventure, action, cards, racing, and puzzle games for iOS, Android, and Java-based smartphones. Mobile games "Asphalt", "Gangstar", and "Minion Rush" are some of the company's most successful video game apps.
The company in 2020 earned $19.2 billion where Gameloft contributed $302.4 million. "Disney Magic Kingdoms", "March of Empires", "Asphalt 8: Airborne", "Dragon Mania Legends", and "Asphalt 9: Legends" were the top-selling games in 2020, accounting for 53% of Gameloft's overall revenue.
10. ByteDance (Private)
Market value: $50 billion
Shanghai-based entertainment app developer ByteDance backed by the biggest VC firms Sequoia Capital and SoftBank is one of the most valuable app companies in the world. The Chinese app maker is mostly known for its short-video entertainment mobile app TikTok which had over 315 million downloads in the first quarter of 2020. In February 2021, TikTok has agreed to pay a $92 million settlement over data privacy claims on behalf of about 90 million U.S. TikTok users.
ByteDance revenue in 2020 was estimated to be at around $29 billion.
9. Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI)
Market cap: $72.079 billion
Headquartered in California, video game giant Activision Blizzard ranks 9th on the list of the 15 most valuable app companies. The Fortune 500 company creates and publishes video games and interactive entertainment content designed for gaming consoles, smartphones, and PCs. One of its most successful gaming apps is "Call of Duty: Mobile" with a massive 300 million downloads since its launch in October 2019. Other mobile games included in Activision Blizzard's portfolio are "World of Warcraft" and "Candy Crush". "Candy Crush" was originally developed and produced by King which was acquired by ATVI in 2016 for $5.9 billion.
Based on the company's full-year 2020 report, ATVI earned a revenue of $8.09 billion. Shares of ATVI jumped by 57.58% over the past twelve months.
8. IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM)
Market cap: $114 billion
IBM is one of the biggest tech companies thriving in the cloud era. Although the company doesn't design and publish apps directly for consumers, IBM Cloud provides a platform that comes with app-building tools where businesses and app makers can develop their hybrid mobile applications.
Based on IBM's full-year report in 2020, the company earned $73.6 billion in revenue where IBM Cloud contributed $25.1 billion in the total revenue. Shares of IBM increased by 18.21% over the past twelve months.
7. China Mobile Ltd
Market cap: $137 billion
Ranking 7th on our list of the most valuable app companies is telecom giant China Mobile Ltd. The company primarily offers broadband and wireline voice services in China and Hong Kong. China Mobile Hong Kong develops lifestyle apps such as UTV, home management app ONE Home-Smart Home, travel data app SIMPLIFY, logistics app, and an all-around bills payment app MyLink.
According to the interim report of China Mobile in 2020, the company earned a total revenue of $59.9 billion wherein applications and information resources brought in $7.3 billion in sales in the first half of 2020. Shares of China Mobile decreased by 1.7% over the past twelve months.
6. Facebook (NASDAQ: FB)
Market cap: $764.3 billion
Facebook ranks 6th on the list of the 15 most valuable app companies. Facebook is the world's most popular social media networking site with 2.8 billion monthly active users. Facebook, Messenger, Pages Manager, and Facebook Ads Manager are some of the top-performing apps built by the company. Photo and video-sharing app Instagram and instant messaging app WhatsApp are also included in FB's family of apps.
In the fourth quarter of 2020, Facebook earned $28.1 billion in revenue. Shares of FB rose by 57.62% over the past twelve months.
Click to continue reading and see the 5 Most Valuable App Companies.
Disclosure: None. 15 Most Valuable App Companies is originally published at Insider Monkey.