Microsoft closes in on Apple, is now world’s second most valuable company

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Microsoft is now the second most valuable company in the world, over taking oil giant Exxon in global rankings to sit comfortably behind Apple, who remains at the top spot.

The move up the charts was helped not only by Exxon getting hit by a slump in global oil prices, but also by an increase in Microsoft’s share prices.

According to the Associated Press, the Redmond firm’s shares swelled to $50.04 on Friday, the highest they have been for 14 years. While they did slip back down slightly to $49.81 not long afterwards, this gave Microsoft a value of $410.5bn, placing it ahead of Exxon.

“Microsoft has made a strategic change,” said tech analyst at FBR Capital Markets, Daniel Ives, adding that Nadella still faces challenges with a company that’s reliant on the declining PC market. However, Ives added that compared with other big time tech companies, such as IBM, HP and Oracle, “Microsoft has done the best job of trying to skate where the puck is going”.

Microsoft now sits behind Apple, who leads the world’s most valuable company list with a value of $668.2bn. Microsoft can thank its relatively new CEO Satya Nadella for its rise in shares, a man who has worked to rid Redmond of its reputation as an old timer which struggles to keep up with new tech trends. Nadella is said to have achieved this by cutting expenses, jobs and refocusing the company on mobile technology and cloud computing.

Speaking at Microsoft’s Future Decoded event in London last week about Microsoft’s vision for the future, Nadella talked up how the firm would reinvent productivity for the 21st century as it presses ahead with its ‘mobile first, cloud first’ strategy

However, for those expecting much insight into Microsoft’s future vision, Nadella was largely disappointing, discussing well-worn clichés about the purpose of technology being to empower people to live up to their full potential, and that mobility will be a key piece of enterprise IT delivery.

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16 November 2014 | 9:31 am – Source: v3.co.uk

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