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Microsoft's Hidden Value Is In Gaining Shares In Markets It Has Yet Little Or No Presence

"What makes Microsoft interesting is the potential for its gaining share in markets where it has had little presence to date, and the potential long-term benefits of the variety of initiatives it has pursuant to this agreement way across multiple innovation platforms," says Jay Vleeschhouwer, innovation analyst at Griffin Securities. These tech initiatives "pull at the same time or leverage capabilities and IP from across the company," he adds.

The most significant

The most significant, he says, is the "retention and reinvigoration of its base business" with the upcoming release of Windows 8 and the unveilng on July 16 of a new version of Office. Nevertheless equally important is the multiple efforts by Microsoft that reflects a "shift from a PC-centric view of the world" to a view that necessarily encompasses mobile and connectivity.

That means synchronization of devices and platforms, says the analyst, including what Microsoft calls an "integrated experience" across brands that includes mobile computing, Windows Phone, and Xbox Live.

Analyst Brad Reback of investment firm Stifel Nicolaus, for one, forecasts fiscal 2014 revenues of $3.35 a share. He points out that even though the PC market will remain sluggish over the nearly term, Microsoft should benefit from several promising product cycles in the coming months - Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, and Office 13.

All of them, says Reback, enasble the company to participate in numerous secular trends, including cloud computing, virtualization, and big data.

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Most of my readers knew me in my past life at the iconic old Business Week where I wrote the Inside Wall Street column -- nearly forever --for 28 years. It was one of the most influential market columns as it moved the stocks I highlighted each week. BW did a yearly ScoreCard of their performance, which confirmed the results. I as well authored two books along the way. One was "Secrets of the Street, the Dark Side of Making Money," published by McGraw-Hill in 1995, followed by "Gene Marcial's Seven Commandments of Stock Investing," which was pubilshed by FT Press in 2008. I moved Inside Wall Street to AOL DailyFinance when Bloomberg acquired BW in December 2009. I started writing for Forbes.com with a new with a new column, Street Beat, in mid-April of 2011, where I expect my readers will follow me.

More information: Forbes