The market sell-off last year might have shaken the confidence of some investors, but there are plenty of strong companies that are well positioned for tremendous growth.

If you don't have much money to invest, but want to get in on the ground floor of tomorrow's market darlings, AI-based lending platform provider Upstart (UPST 10.22%) and leading cybersecurity firm SentinelOne (S 5.41%) might be what you're looking for.

1. Upstart

Upstart has the potential to deliver multibagger returns over the next decade. Its artificial intelligence-based lending platform is completely revolutionizing how banks process and approve credit applications. The benefits Upstart's platform offers are more accurate risk assessment, higher approval rates, and lower interest rates for borrowers. This adds up to better terms for consumers and higher returns for lenders.

But it shouldn't be surprising that a company operating in the world of loans and credit is going to suffer lower revenue performance in a weakened economic environment. Upstart reported a 52% drop in revenue in the last quarter, driven by lower loan originations from lending partners. 

The stock has fallen 85% over the last year, but that makes it ripe for a big rebound. Upstart's business was booming just over a year ago when the economy was recovering from the pandemic. It will return to growth when the outlook for the economy is healthier in the near term, so the most important question is whether it can survive a downturn.

While the company ended 2022 with a net debt position of $553 million, Upstart has a record of turning a profit while investing in its platform capabilities. Management is taking actions to lower costs to return to profitability, including reducing staff and cutting back on marketing to get margins up.   

It's also encouraging that Upstart is still seeing demand for its platform without having to lower prices for its service. For example, the company reported a 14% decline in lending volume last year, but the platform's contribution profit increased by 13% year over year, reflecting solid pricing power. 

Upstart's long-term market opportunity in capturing more loan originations is estimated at $5 trillion, so it can grow for a long time. If you don't have much to invest but want a stock with attractive upside without risking a lot of money, Upstart would make a great choice. Buying one share at the current quote of about $16 could turn into a three-figure sum in the next bull market.

2. SentinelOne

Perhaps an even better bet right now is this top cybersecurity provider. Spending on mission-critical security software is a must for businesses even when the economy isn't performing well. This is why SentinelOne continues to report robust growth, and why the stock's recent fall could be a once-in-a-decade buying opportunity.

SentinelOne is using AI to detect and respond to threats in real time. While there are several cybersecurity providers competing in this burgeoning market, SentinelOne claims that its Singularity XDR platform offers the fastest response time of any alternative. But what matters most is the company's superior growth relative to competitors.

CrowdStrike is one of the top leaders in cybersecurity. But its 54% revenue growth last year is far off the pace of SentinelOne's 106%. 

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S data by YCharts

One factor that has contributed to the sell-off in SentinelOne's stock over the last year is a lack of profitability. While SentinelOne's operating profit margin has been negative, it was able to cut its adjusted operating losses nearly in half last year. Plus, the company is winning a majority of deals against competitors, while retaining stable selling prices, which is a good indicator that margins will continue to improve and provide a catalyst for a higher stock price. Like Upstart, SentinelOne is demonstrating it can win new business without having to lower prices -- another sign of competitive strength.

SentinelOne is one of the best cybersecurity stocks to buy right now. Despite continued superior growth, the shares trade at a small discount on a price-to-sales basis to industry peers. At the current price of about $15, the stock is a solid buy.