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Augmenting digital monopolies : A corporate financialization perspective on the rise of Big Tech

Title data

Klinge, Tobias J. ; Hendrikse, Reijer ; Fernandez, Rodrigo ; Adriaans, Ilke:
Augmenting digital monopolies : A corporate financialization perspective on the rise of Big Tech.
In: Competition & Change. Vol. 27 (2023) Issue 2 . - pp. 332-353.
ISSN 1477-2221
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/10245294221105573

Abstract in another language

Building on the notion of corporate financialization, this article analyzes the financial dynamics of the world’s largest digital platforms over the period 2000–2020: Alibaba, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, Meta (Facebook), Microsoft, and Tencent. These “Big Tech” corporations jointly form the infrastructural core of the digital economy. Taking cues from critical media studies and political economy, we probe their financial statements according to three stylized indicators of corporate financialization: (i) expanding financial assets and debt; (ii) augmenting asset structures, with intangible assets in the form of goodwill ballooning alongside tangible capital; and (iii) maximizing shareholder value. Our findings point to commonalities among the ‘avantgarde of digital capitalism’, where feedback loops between mounting market dominance, data extraction, and above-average profits have been successfully leveraged with key tools of corporate financialization to accelerate Big Tech’s infrastructural dominance across economy and society.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Economic Geography
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Economic Geography > Chair Economic Geography - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Stefan Ouma
Result of work at the UBT: No
DDC Subjects: 300 Social sciences > 300 Social sciences, sociology and anthropology
300 Social sciences > 320 Political science
300 Social sciences > 330 Economics
900 History and geography > 910 Geography, travel
Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2023 08:01
Last Modified: 17 Nov 2023 08:01
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/87644