There are no shortage of ways for people to build wealth. They can squirrel away money in their savings account, buy real estate, or purchase physical gold. But the method proven to deliver the highest average annual returns over the long run is putting your capital to work in the stock market.
For example, despite navigating its way through the Black Monday crash in 1987, the dot-com bubble, the Great Recession, and the coronavirus crash, the benchmark S&P 500 has averaged an annual total return, including dividends paid, of 11% since the beginning of 1980. At this return rate, folks reinvesting their dividends are doubling their money about every 6.5 years.
But you don’t have to settle for simply matching the performance of the market. If you buy stakes in game-changing businesses, you have the opportunity to take a large sum of money and turn it into a life-altering amount of cash. The following four game-changing stocks all have the tools necessary to turn a $200,000 investment into $1 million (or more) over the next decade.
Whereas real estate is traditionally a slow-growing, if not boring, sector, technology-driven real estate company Redfin (NASDAQ:RDFN) is showing Wall Street that it has the ability to completely change how properties are purchased, sold, and viewed.
One of the core attributes of the Redfin operating model is saving its users money. Traditional real estate companies charge up to a 3% commission/listing fee when a home is bought or sold. Depending on how much previous business was completed with the company, Redfin only charges a fee ranging from 1% to 1.5%. A difference of 1.5% to 2% might not sound like much, but it’s quite impactful with home prices soaring. According to Realtor.com, the median home price for active listings in June 2021 was $385,000, meaning Redfin could save the median seller up to $7,700 in costs.
But it’s not just a more cost-efficient operation that’s driving buyers and sellers to Redfin. It’s the company’s adaptation to a changing real estate landscape and the unparalleled personalization it provides. For instance, RedfinNow is a service that purchases homes for cash, which removes the hassles of putting a home on the market and haggling with prospective buyers over price. There’s also Redfin Concierge, which works with homeowners on improvements and staging to maximize the value of their home.
With Redfin’s share of existing home sales nearly tripling from 0.44% at the end of 2015 to 1.14% by March 2021, it’s pretty evident that Redfin’s operating model is resonating with consumers.
Just because a high-growth stock has a market cap in excess of $100 billion doesn’t mean it can’t quintuple (or more) over the next decade. Fintech stock Square (NYSE:SQ) has two operating segments that should allow it to handily outperform the broader market in the coming 10 years.
Square’s bread and butter has long been its seller ecosystem, which provides point-of-sale devices, analytics, and other tools that help merchants succeed. Between 2012 and 2019, the gross payment volume (GPV) on Square’s network surged by an average of 49% annually, with GPV on track to easily top $130 billion in 2021.
As I’ve previously noted, the seller ecosystem was really designed to be a tool for smaller merchants. Over time, however, the percentage of medium-and-large-sized businesses utilizing the platform has grown. As of the end of March, 61% of GPV came from businesses with $125,000 or more in annualized GPV, up from 52% in Q1 2019. Since this is a fee-driven operating segment, it implies steady profit growth for the seller ecosystem.
However, the real lure here is digital peer-to-peer platform Cash App, which has seen its monthly active user count more than quintuple in three years to 36 million (as of Dec. 31, 2020). Cash App allows Square to monetize consumer purchases, bank transfers, investments, and even Bitcoin exchange. With gross profit per user of $41, compared to less than $5 in expenses to bring in each new user, Cash App is a burgeoning cash cow for Square.
Fastly’s primary task is to expedite the delivery of content to end users as quickly and securely as possible. While we we’re witnessing a pretty steady shift of businesses pushing online prior to the pandemic, the coronavirus took this steady trend and kicked it into overdrive. Essentially, Fastly will benefit as more data is consumed digitally in the post-pandemic environment — a trend that’s unlikely to slow or ever reverse.
All the key metrics investors would look for in a usage-based company are pointing in the right direction. The company’s dollar-based net expansion rate has tallied 147% (Q3 2020), 143% (Q4 2020), and 139% (Q1 2021) in each of the past three quarters. In simple terms, this means existing clients spent 47%, 43%, and 39% more than they did in each respective year-ago quarter. We’ve also seen total customer count, enterprise customer count, and average enterprise customer spend, climb on a quarterly basis.
What’s perhaps most impressive about Fastly has been the company’s ability to overcome ByteDance (the parent of TikTok) pulling traffic from its network in Q3 2020 due to a stateside spat with the Trump administration. ByteDance was Fastly’s biggest customer by sales in the first-half of 2020. Despite this loss, Fastly still produced sales growth of better than 40% in the third quarter. Fastly is quickly becoming a popular content delivery solution, and the company’s rapid sales growth proves it.
A final game-changing stock that has the ability to make its shareholder a whole lot richer over the next decade is cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) software provider Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM).
Put simply, CRM software is what customer-facing businesses use to log and access client information in real-time, handle service and product issues, manage online marketing campaigns, and run predictive analysis with regard to which clients might purchase a new product or service. That’s just a small snippet of what CRM can help with. It’s a relatively common solution employed by retail and service-oriented companies, but it is gaining traction in nontraditional industries and sectors.
Salesforce chimes in as the single most-dominant player in the global CRM space. According to IDC, Salesforce controlled just shy of 20% of all global CRM spending in the first-half of 2020. That was more than the next four competitors, combined. Between internal innovation and CEO Marc Benioff’s willingness to lean on acquisitions as a means to cross-sell and broaden its service portfolio and client base, Salesforce’s market share lead appears virtually insurmountable in CRM software.
Benioff anticipates Salesforce surpassing $50 billion in full-year sales by fiscal 2026 after delivering $21.3 billion in annual sales in fiscal 2021. If this projection proves accurate, Salesforce’s 20%-plus sustained growth rate should help motor its stock a lot higher.
This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis — even one of our own — helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.