Over the past decade, growth stocks have absolutely trounced value stocks by an unprecedented margin for an even more unprecedented amount of time. It's unclear how long that outperformance will continue, or if there will be a reversion to value at some point; however, the conditions that have helped growth outperform value remains -- low economic growth, low interest rates, and a fair amount of technology disruption.
In that light, it may be helpful to concentrate on those stocks with fantastic growth prospects. Even if you don't buy in at today's prices, it would be a good idea to put the following growth all-stars on your watchlist, in case they pull back. All three seem poised for massive growth in the decade ahead.
Chinese e-commerce upstart Pinduoduo (PDD -5.13%) looks like a solid bet to grow by leaps and bounds over the next decade, given its explosive growth in just its first five years as a company. Launched by an ex-Google engineer in just 2015, Pinduoduo has already racked up 628.1 million active buyers, moved $163.4 billion of gross merchandise volume in the past 12 months, and saw its transaction revenue up 76% in the recent quarter. For comparison, it took leading e-commerce player Alibaba (BABA -1.86%) 15 years to reach 500 million active buyers, versus just four for Pinduoduo.
How did Pinduoduo do it? By having a different model, which enables shoppers to invite along a group of friends or acquaintances in order to get bulk-buying discounts on a particular item. The social media element is a new wrinkle among e-commerce platforms, adding an element of fun and camaraderie in the online shopping experience. The skyrocketing growth seems to prove the model is a big hit with Chinese digital-first audiences. And after all, most people love a good deal.
Pinduduo allows users to communicate to their friends easily via Chinese super-app WeChat, as WeChat owner Tencent Holdings (TCEHY -1.79%) owns about 16.5% of Pinduoduo shares. That "viral" nature of sharing discounts to WeChat friends is part of what has allowed Pinduoduo to grow so quickly.
One note of caution: Pinduoduo gets most revenue from advertising, and ad revenue was up "only" 39% last quarter. However, the recent quarter's performance came during the depths of the China COVID-19 lockdowns, during which Pinduoduo lowered ad prices and other fees for its customers, which depressed ad spend in the quarter. I think it's a safe bet that Pinduoduo's revenue would be more in line with transaction revenue growth in more normal times.
China's 2 billion-plus population is just entering the middle class, and is going online to shop more and more by the day. Less than 5 years old and growing like a weed, Pinduoduo seems like a solid bet to continue its massive growth run for the next decade.
Latin American e-commerce and digital finance company MercadoLibre (MELI -0.06%) has also seen a big surge in its stock price this year. Surprise, surprise -- like Pinduoduo, it's in the field of e-commerce. But while Pinduoduo is one of three very large e-commerce competitors in China, MercadoLibre has a dominant share of e-commerce in Latin America.
While Latin America has a smaller population than China, at roughly 650 million people, the e-commerce opportunity remains very large. Only 155 million Latin Americans used e-commerce last year, and e-commerce still accounts for only about 4.2% of overall retail sales in the region, whereas in America, that number is in the low teens.
To facilitate payments on its platform, MercadoLibre also built out a digital payments platform, Mercado Pago, which has since grown into a payments juggernaut, bringing digital solutions to a region in which only about half the population has a bank account, and many transactions -- even 21% of e-commerce transactions -- are paid in cash. Over the years, MercadoLibre's revenue from non-marketplace segments, which is predominantly the fintech payments and lending businesses, has become as large as marketplace transaction revenues, and growing at an even higher pace.
The COVID-19 pandemic could very well accelerate the already-robust growth MercadoLibre was enjoying. According to Apptopia, shopping app downloads in Latin America surged 43% year over year during May. As the leader in the region, look for MercadoLibre to match or even accelerate the 70.5% revenue growth rate it posted in the first quarter.
With two high-growth, interconnected platforms in e-commerce and fintech, and with digital solutions so underpenetrated in the region, look for MercadoLibre to grow by leaps and bounds over the coming decade and beyond.
Finally, database software-as-a-service company MongoDB (MDB 1.93%) is anther company that stands to look much, much bigger a decade from now than it does today. Though MongoDB's trailing 12-month revenue is only $463 million, it's a company that seems set to disrupt the very large and profitable enterprise database market.
IDC estimates the database market to reach $71 billion in 2020, and growing at an 11% compound growth rate through 2023 to $97 billion. That's a really high growth rate for a large and relatively mature market. However, new enterprise applications such as AI, e-commerce, big data, 5G, and the Internet of Things will create exponentially higher amounts of data over the next decade and beyond, and all of that data needs to be stored, organized, and easily accessed.
Why is MongoDB set to take more market share in the database market? Mainly because it has emerged as the outright leader in a new kind of database architecture called a document database. Traditional relational databases store information in a row-and-column format that provides lots of efficiency, but not a lot of flexibility. Much of today's data is semi-structured or unstructured, consisting of things like social media posts, pictures, and other elements that don't necessarily fit into a rigid format.
MongoDB's document platform is much more flexible to suit this type of data, but can also work with traditional types of data too. It can also be run on-premises, in the cloud via MongoDB's Atlas as-a-service offering, or on hybrid clouds. This enables today's developers more freedom and ease to innovate, which can be enormously valuable in this fast-paced digital world.
MongoDB's solution has even warded off a copycat threat from Amazon.com (AMZN -0.99%), and judging from its impressive recent results, MongoDB seems poised to continue taking market share and growing well into the 2020s and beyond.