Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

3 Unstoppable Cloud Stocks to Buy Right Now

By Chris Neiger, Danny Vena, and Brian Withers - May 30, 2021 at 8:30AM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

These tech stocks are leading in their respective cloud markets -- here's why investors would be wise to pay attention.

Cloud computing is one of the most important technology trends right now, and it will continue to be for years to come. The latest estimates show that the public cloud computing market will increase from a market size of $270 billion last year to $397 billion by 2022.

So how can investors best tap into cloud computing's growth? By buying shares of great tech stocks that are leaders in the cloud market. To help you track down a few of those, we asked three Motley Fool contributors for unstoppable cloud stock ideas and they came back with Snowflake (SNOW 4.03%), Atlassian (TEAM 5.45%), and Amazon (AMZN -0.76%).

A man and a woman pointing at a tablet.

Image source: Getty Images.

Let it SNOW

Danny Vena (Snowflake): When Snowflake went public roughly eight months ago, it took the IPO market by storm. The stock was initially priced in a range of $75 to $85 per share and eventually was boosted to $120 as demand for the stock soared. Shares surged out of the gate and never looked back, opening at $245 and closing at $255, up 113% on its first day of trading, making it the biggest software IPO ever.

While excitement around the data warehouse and business analytics provider has faded, its future is as bright as ever. Savvy investors can now pick up shares below the IPO price for an unstoppable cloud stock that's just getting started.

Snowflake offers a cloud-based digital warehouse that allows users to store, access, analyze, and more easily share data. It breaks down data silos, ingesting both structured and semi-structured data, helping users extract more actionable information. Perhaps more importantly, the service is cloud-agnostic, meaning its services are available on public cloud platforms, including Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) Azure, and Alphabet's (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) Google Cloud, among others.  

For its 2022 fiscal first quarter (ended April 30, 2021), Snowflake's product revenue of $214 million grew 110% year over year, continuing the triple-digit growth it generated last year. Even more impressive is the company's forecast for the current year, as Snowflake is guiding for fiscal 2022 product revenue growth of more than 85% at the midpoint of its guidance. While the company continues to lose money, it expects adjusted free cash flow to improve to breakeven this fiscal year, which should assuage concerns about its lack of profits. 

Snowflake's remaining performance obligation -- which consists of future revenue that is under contract but has not yet been recognized -- surged to $1.4 billion, up 206% year over year (not a typo). This helps to illustrate the strength of the company's ongoing subscription revenue.

Snowflake's customer metrics are equally impressive. Total customers of 4,532 grew 67% year over year, while growth of those spending $1 million or more over the trailing-12-month period clocked in at 117%. Not only is the company attracting new high-paying clients, but existing customers are spending more as well, as evidenced by the company's net revenue retention rate of 168%.

If you need further proof that its customers are delighted with its services, consider this: Snowflake boasts a net promoter score of 71 -- when anything above 70 is considered "world class." 

Some investors will no doubt balk at Snowflake's valuation, as the company is priced at 59 times forward sales. It's worth remembering, however, that the company's revenue is growing by triple-digits, making its price tag seem far more reasonable.

A woman using a laptop and sitting at a desk.

Image source: Getty Images.

Powering teams everywhere

Brian Withers (Atlassian): Atlassian's mission is to "unleash the power of teams." Combined with its efforts to be a cloud-first company, it's becoming unstoppable. The latest revenue and customer growth numbers are evidence this team-based software specialist is providing incredible value for its customers large and small. Even as it quickly attracts a large active customer base, its top line is growing even faster. This means that once customers get on board, they realize the value of Atlassian's toolset and expand their spending over time. 

Metric

Q3 2020

Q2 2021

Q3 2021 

QOQ change

YOY change

Revenue

$412 million

$501 million

$569 million

14%

38%

Active customers 

171,051

194,334

212,807

10%

24%

Data source: Company earnings reports and earnings calls. Note: Q3 2021 ended March 31, 2021. QOQ = quarter over quarter. YOY = year over year.

The company is in the middle of a massive transition, migrating customers off its on-premise server platform to a cloud-first model. This transition is allowing the research and development team to invest even more in its cloud platform. It's released what it calls its Point A tools, a collection of five cloud-based applications, but with a twist. The design and features of these tools are being influenced by the customers who are using them. With early feedback from cloud users, these tools are getting the best and most requested features fast-tracked to enable customers to get the enhancements in record time. Customers and the company are seeing positive results from these efforts, and it is a great differentiator for Atlassian's products.

But not only is this team collaboration software specialist innovating for customers, its employees love working there too. The company again landed on Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For list, and ranked eighth in the large tech company group. Happy employees make for happy customers. Happy customers make for happy investors. The next year or two might be a little rocky for Atlassian as customers migrate to its cloud-based products, but it will emerge from this transition stronger than ever. Investors would do well to get on board today with a few shares of this unstoppable cloud stock.

A woman standing in front of computer servers.

Image source: Getty Images.

The king of the cloud 

Chris Neiger (Amazon): Amazon is best known for its e-commerce business, but it's the company's Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud computing segment that actually makes Amazon the most money.

In the most recent quarter, AWS brought in $13.5 billion in sales for Amazon and $4.2 billion in operating income. That makes AWS the most lucrative business that Amazon has by far. For context, the company's North American e-commerce sales were a staggering $64.4 billion in the same quarter, but with just $3.5 billion in operating income. 

If you're still not impressed with Amazon's cloud business, consider that AWS is just 15 years old and it's already the largest cloud infrastructure company, with 32% of the market and an annual revenue run rate of $54 billion.

And AWS isn't finished growing. The company mentioned recently that the "media and entertainment industry continues to move to AWS at a rapid pace" and said that Disney is tapping AWS to expand its Disney+ video streaming service.  

Investors may be concerned that they've missed out on Amazon's share price gains and that it's too late to invest in the company. But Amazon's AWS is still growing and the cloud computing market still has a lot of room to expand in the coming years. And with Amazon's online shopping platform leading the e-commerce boom in the U.S., the company is firing on all cylinders in nearly every business it runs. 

All of which means that investors who are looking for one of the best long-term investments in the cloud computing market need to look no further than Amazon.

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Suzanne Frey, an executive at Alphabet, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Teresa Kersten, an employee of LinkedIn, a Microsoft subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Brian Withers owns shares of Atlassian. Chris Neiger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Danny Vena owns shares of Alphabet (A shares), Amazon, Atlassian, Microsoft, Snowflake Inc., and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A shares), Alphabet (C shares), Amazon, Atlassian, Microsoft, Snowflake Inc., and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool recommends the following options: long January 2022 $1,920 calls on Amazon and short January 2022 $1,940 calls on Amazon. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Atlassian Corporation Plc Stock Quote
Atlassian Corporation Plc
TEAM
$283.22 (5.45%) $14.63
Amazon.com, Inc. Stock Quote
Amazon.com, Inc.
AMZN
$139.73 (-0.76%) $-1.07
Snowflake Inc. Stock Quote
Snowflake Inc.
SNOW
$172.20 (4.03%) $6.67

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
377%
 
S&P 500 Returns
123%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 08/08/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.