The Big Five’s Biggest Acquisitions (infographic)

The tech world is ruled by a group of companies known as the Big Five. This is a group of five giants, namely, Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet, Google and Facebook. Google is now a subsidiary of Alphabet which is a company established to help Google branch out into a variety of other fields. Over the years the Big Five have managed to accumulate a combined market capitalization of several trillions of dollars, and they have made many acquisitions through the money that they have earned.

If we start with Microsoft, its biggest acquisition so far has been LinkedIn which it acquired for a total of 26.2 billion dollars. This acquisition of the social media platform has been a good move for Microsoft since it gave them access to the hundreds of millions of people that used LinkedIn on a regular basis. However, not all of Microsoft’s acquisitions have been as fruitful. Their acquisition of Nokia for 7.2 billion dollars ended up costing the company a lot of money and they ended up selling this acquisition for just 350 million dollars due to Nokia’s inability to remain competitive in the smartphone marketplace as well as Microsoft re-strategizing by exiting the smartphone market.

Amazon has spent about 20 billion dollars on acquisitions since the year 2017. Most of its acquisitions have been relatively small, but it did make one huge acquisition which was of the retailer Whole Foods for 13.7 billion dollars. This makes sense when you consider the fact that Amazon has been trying to become more of a complete package for its consumers, allowing it to provide all of its users needs including things like groceries and the like.


Alphabet is the next company on the list, and this company is basically just another name for Google. This company has made a few big acquisitions, with the biggest being Motorola for 12.5 billion. However, in a situation that is quite similar to what Microsoft faced with Nokia, Alphabet had to sell Motorola for 3 billion because of the fact that their attempt to move into the world of mobile phones was not panning out with what Motorola had to offer, thereby showing that two of the biggest telecom companies of the past were basically useless in the modern era. Perhaps Alphabet’s most notable and successful acquisition has been that of YouTube, which it acquired for a relatively low sum of 1 billion dollars.

Apple is one of the most profitable companies in the world, but they have not been making all that many acquisitions especially when you compare them to the other companies within the Big Five. Their largest acquisition has been for Beats Electronics which they bought for 3 billion in order to beef up the audio quality of the various audio based products that they provided as well as on their smartphones.

Facebook has made a few high profile and high value acquisitions recently, rounding out the acquisitions that the Big Five have made. Perhaps it’s most notable acquisition was that of WhatsApp which it acquired for $22 billion. Instagram is another highly valuable acquisition which Facebook obtained for a billion dollars. Perhaps its most mysterious acquisition is that of the Oculus company which specializes in VR, and it is mysterious because nothing has really come out of this acquisition so far.



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Featured visual courtesy of: Visualcapitalist.

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