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Seeking the next Steve Jobs

Jim Cramer believes that Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs was the greatest inventor of our generation. Who might follow in his massive footsteps?

It's a question the "Mad Money" host often ponders. After all, Steve Jobs generated considerable returns for his shareholders.

According to published reports, after adjusting for stock splits, an investor who paid $2,200 to buy 100 shares of Apple at its IPO price of $22 in December 1980 would have had an investment worth $302,600 at the time of Jobs' passing in 2011.

Although Cramer believes that no executive currently equals Steve Jobs, he does think at least 3 businessmen are emerging as potential torchbearers in days to come. They follow:




Steve Jobs circa 1996.
Bob Riha | WireImage | Getty Images
Steve Jobs circa 1996.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO

Cramer believes that Facebook has the potential to connect the world. And he thinks that Mark Zuckerberg's strategic acquisition of Whatsapp is another sign of the CEO's enormous vision.

Even though Facebook paid $19 billion for Whatsapp, and it's a free messaging service, Cramer thinks Facebook made a shrewd move that can generate huge profits.

"I can peg Whatsapp at $30 billion using valuations the current market is paying for Twitter, Linkedin and Yelp. And when compared to Twitter, Facebook is getting a faster growing company for $42 per subscriber, while Twitter comes in at $142 per user," Cramer noted.

"But more important. Mark Zuckerberg knows kids. He knows that a huge percentage of the 450 million users of Whatsapp will be thrilled to have this messaging service integrated into their Facebook page."

The acquisition plays into Zuckerberg's broad vision; Cramer is impressed. "I see Zuckerberg as a modern Alexander Graham Bell," Cramer said.

Elon Musk, Tesla co-founder and CEO

Cramer thinks that Tesla has the potential to transform the automobile industry, with its electric cars as potentially momentous as the Model T in the early 20th century.

Cramer has gotten behind the wheel of a Tesla and found the car generates excitement. "I was wowed by my test drive," said Cramer. I want one. It is that terrific. It was the best, most quiet and most powerful ride I ever had."

That's not to say Cramer is an unbridled buyer of the stock. "Tesla is an extremely difficult animal to value which is why I call it a cult stock," Cramer said. That is, part of the substantial valuation stems from investor enthusiasm about Telsa. And enthusiasm can ebb as quickly as it flows.

Therefore, if you're a conservative investor, Cramer thinks there are other stocks that present far less risk. Nonetheless, Cramer finds it hard not to be impressed by the advances introduced by Tesla. "Elon Musk may well be a modern day Henry Ford meets Thomas Alva Edison," Cramer said.

Larry Page, Google co-founder and CEO

Cramer thinks Page has laid a course for Google that makes it a company that's almost without rivals. Not only has the company's search engine become almost synonymous with Internet but Page appears to have his sights set on much more.

"Google has more fingers in more pies than any company I've ever seen: cell phones, PCs, search, advertising, telecommunications, wearables, cars, entertainment, you name it," Cramer said.

By many accounts, Page even wants to Google your appliances.

In support of that thesis, Cramer points to Google's acquisition of Nest, the makers of smart thermostats and fire alarms.

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The thermostats learns your schedule and can be controlled from your phone while the smoke alarms speak to you in a human voice and tell you where the problem is.

Not only are Nest products state of the art but Cramer says it's not far-fetched to think that Google will expand this technology into other devices over time.

Cramer sees the acquisition as another step in a string of extremely smart moves - so smart, Cramer compared Page to a modern-day Albert Einstein.

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