Move Over, GE. The Tech Conglomerates Are the New Leaders of Industry.

The eulogies for the corporate conglomerate have been pouring in fast. But in fact, these monsters of modern business are now bigger, more powerful and perhaps more world-consumingly durable than ever—they also look very different than in the past.

The dismantling of General Electric, Toshiba, Johnson & Johnson, Siemens, DowDuPont, United Technologies and other sprawling business empires in recent years has been heralded as the end of the conglomerate and the demise of the idea that brilliant management teams can succeed operating in very different industries. But just as those giants of traditional industry are being dismembered, today’s tech giants have arisen as latter-day conglomerates—what some even call “neo-conglomerates.” They boast valuations bigger than any other companies in history, and have diversified their businesses through acquisitions and new starts just like conglomerates of old.

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