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The Top 11 Fastest-Growing Industries


Most businesses and services are still slowly recovering from the trauma of the Great Recession. These 11 categories, however, are already in blue-sky territory.

E-Book Publishers

The term "out of print" is beginning to take on new meaning. Though a bit hyperbolic, it's been said that a couple of generations from now, people won't know what a book is.

The $6.8 billion e-book market certainly seems to speak to a paperless future. Many book publishers are now catering exclusively to the on-the-go reader by producing digital-only versions of some titles. The recent merger of publishing powerhouses Penguin and Random House will likely propel the company to the top of the e-book industry and let it reap a large share of the 88.3% revenue growth, annualized between 2008 and 2018.

Social Network Game Development

The big winner, and by a long shot, among the growth industries of the near-future is the one that has us furiously drawing pictures of guess words and matching colored candies inside four-inch screens. Though this sector had barely emerged from the womb 10 years ago, companies that create casual-social games and apps for mobile devices are expected to make $6 billion in 2013, and are projected to grow by a 134.4% annual margin through the next five years.

When founded in 1982, Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) was at the forefront of home-computer console gaming and has survived by evolving with technological advances. The company has remained relevant with moves like its 2010 acquisition of Angry Birds publisher Chillingo for $20 million in cash and the launch of Hasbro's (NASDAQ:HAS) classic Battleship game as an app.

Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA), on the other hand, was born a generation later to a player base of Facebook users and owes the rapid success of Farmville -- which peaked at 82 million players a month -- to its relationship with the social network.Though the stock has been in trouble since its public debut, Zynga still lays claim to some of the most widely played games in the world.

Also see: The Top 10 Most At-Risk Industries
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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