Mar 10, 2021 • 30M

Microsoft: Generational Game-Changer for ATL

Microsoft's decision to GO BIG in ATL has the potential put our city on a new trajectory; like we saw during and after the 1996 Olympics...

Upgrade to listen

Appears in this episode

Connecting residents and visitors with Atlanta's past, present and future. Wide variety of interesting topics, ranging from the city's origins to the impact of disruptive technologies.
Episode details

Exploring Atlanta by ATLsherpa is a podcast & newsletter for people who are interested in Atlanta and want to experience the city more fully. My mission is to help you connect with Atlanta’s past, present, and future. You will find a treasure trove of educational content, maps, videos and more at In addition to the Substack app, this podcast is available on Spotify and Apple Podcast.

Stay curious and keep exploring!

Listen on Spotify

Listen on Apple Podcasts

Bigger than I thought…

Now that I have had a chance to digest the “Big Announcement,” I am convinced that Microsoft’s decision to purchase 90 acres in NW ATL and build a new corporate campus is even bigger and more important than I thought.

This decision to GO BIG in ATL has the potential put our city on a new trajectory; similar to what we witnessed after the 1996 Olympics.

To help people understand the significance of their decision, I created an immersive virtual tour on Google Earth. This exercise gave me a greater appreciation for what is about to happen to ATL. This is big — I mean really big!

Click on this image to take a Google Earth Virtual Tour of the Microsoft Announcement by ATLsherpa

My Big “Ah-Ha” has been 35 years in the making…

I have been following Microsoft since it went public on March 13, 1986 — 35 years ago this Saturday! I was a newly minted stockbroker who had just moved to ATL after finishing up at FSU. I got a call one day from one of my clients who owned a small technology company in Norcross. He asked if I could get him shares of ‘some company’ that was about to go public. I asked him for the name and he said, “Microsoft.” I had never heard of it but assured him that I would do whatever I could to get him some shares. Before we hung up, I remember him telling me to look up something called, “MS-DOS,” which of course I did. It’s funny how you remember fleeting conversations like that after so many years.

This is what a newly minted stockbroker looked like in 1987. Photo was taken in my Buckhead office by my biggest fan (my mom) on a Saturday. That “behemoth” on the credenza behind me would have been running on MS-DOS 3.X. The big box in the wall was called a “Quotron Machine.” Yes, that’s a “Rolodex” to my left.

In any event, that IPO (initial public offering) turned out to be a “hot” stock, which means it was difficult to get shares. Somehow, I managed to fenagle 25 shares for my client. Just for curiosity, I just calculated (with the help of Microsoft’s website) how much those 25 shares, which cost him $720, would be worth today. The answer: A cool $1,683,215.

Those original 25 shares (now 7,200) would be worth almost $1.7 million. I hope he hung on to them…

Therein lies the first clue as to why this announcement is such a big deal for ATL. This was my big “ah-ha”. The Microsoft Corporation is a generational wealth-creation machine!

Imagine (hint, hint) if every child in America was given $1,000 worth of MSFT when they were born. Those shares would be placed in an investment trust so that the child and his/her parents could NOT access the funds until the child turned 21. If we could add $1,000 per year to that trust fund, that’s even better! Now, consider what that investment fund would be worth when the kid turns 21. More importantly, think about what that would do to the wealth gap in America! I know it sounds crazy but, as Einstein said, if we want to solve the significant problems we face, we have to get to a new level of thinking. This, my friends, is a new level of thinking! MSFT is a company and its stock is a vehicle that can get us there.


This episode is for paid subscribers