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3 Stocks to Watch As the Adoption of MLaaS Continues to Grow

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The importance of machine learning (“ML”) has been increasing over the years as organizations are making use of this technology to automate processes among other usages. ML can train artificial intelligence (“AI”) to perform a task without necessarily requiring human assistance. But setting up an ML infrastructure can be cost-intensive, making it difficult for certain firms to afford. This is where machine learning as a service (MLaaS) has come to the forefront.

With the help of MLaaS, organizations can have access to pre-programmed ML tools to utilize for their operations and customize according to their needs. This can significantly reduce the cost of developing and maintaining ML projects as firms don’t have to incur such expenses at their end. This is because MLaaS offerings are available on cloud platforms which also means that firms can easily access such tools, simply with an Internet connection.

Cloud adoption has been growing over the years owing to the conveniences it provides to organizations including easy access, flexibility, affordability, and so on. The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic last year only accelerated cloud adoption as remote working led companies to rapidly shift to the cloud model. Even as we move beyond the pandemic, cloud computing looks ready to stay as its benefits outweigh the traditional ways of developing projects, and MLaaS, as part of cloud computing, should also witness growth.

Since MLaaS offers developers a pre-built set of tools and services, it reduces the time that would be spent in developing such tools before implementing them in a project. In fact, a Neuromation article stated that certain MLaaS providers also give users access to pre-made application programming interfaces for predictive analytics, image recognition, sentiment analysis, and other ML use cases.

The initial setup and maintenance is taken care of by MLaaS providers. So, organizations can focus more on developing their projects, thereby reducing the completion time. This can lead them to launch their products or services at a faster pace and be more competitive.

Reflective of the benefits that MLaaS is providing to firms, the MLaaS market seems poised to grow. Per a report by Mordor Intelligence, the MLaaS market should witness a CAGR of 39.86% from 2021 to 2026. The report further stated that factors like the Internet of Things, automation, demand for consumer behavior analytics, among others, are expected to drive the growth of MLaaS.

3 Stocks to Watch Out For

The adoption of MLaaS seems ready to grow in the near term as it offers organizations benefits like reduced cost, pre-built tools for developing projects, reduced completion time, and so on. To take advantage of the potential of MLaaS, it will be prudent to take a look at companies that stand to benefit from it. We have selected three such stocks that carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT - Free Report) seems to be benefiting from the rapid adoption of cloud computing and ML. The company offers MLaaS through its Azure ML cloud platform, allowing data scientists and developers to build, train and deploy ML models and boost productivity.

Shares of Microsoft have gained 28.7% year to date and it currently has a Zacks Rank #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 0.2% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 4.3%.

Alphabet Inc.’s (GOOGL - Free Report) Google offers AutoML via its Google Cloud platform. On May 18, Google announced the general availability of Vertex AI, which unifies Google Cloud’s existing ML offerings into a single environment that will allow companies to build, train and deploy ML models.

Shares of Alphabet have risen 55.3% year to date and it currently carries a Zacks Rank #3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased nearly 1% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 53.8%.

Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN - Free Report) offers MLaaS services through its Amazon Web Services (“AWS”) platform. Amazon recently launched Amazon Lookout for Metrics, which uses ML to automatically detect anomalies in metrics and diagnose them. On Jun 23, AWS announced the expansion of its partnership with Salesforce, allowing customers to innovate faster with pre-built applications combining AWS and Salesforce Customer 360. Salesforce will also embed AWS services for ML, AI, and others, directly in new applications for sales and other use cases.

Shares of Amazon have gained 11.5% year to date and the company currently has a Zacks Rank #3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 1.6% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 36.7%.


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