Skyrocketing global demand has seen Amazon Web Services – the worldwide market leader in cloud computing – sign up more than 1 million customers, and as more and more businesses migrate to the cloud, it’s projected the company could be worth up to US$50 billion.

The forecast, from US financial services and investment firm Robert W. Baird & Co, comes as AWS continues to roll out a range of additional services to keep it far ahead of rivals’ cloud services. They include the availability of AWS CloudTrail with Amazon CloudWatch Logs – allowing clients to manage API communications and get automatic notifications – in four more markets: Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo and Frankfurt.

Baird analysts said migration by companies to cloud computing services would continue as it becomes more apparent among decision makers what the advantages of doing so are. They include the ability to store large amounts of data on data centres’ servers as well as running programs and apps on them.

It means operations can be conducted from anywhere in the world as long as there’s an internet connection, and with high levels of security and uptime, it makes solid business sense. As does the cost factor: instead of running on-site systems and employing costly IT staff to manage them, companies can drastically reduce their financial outlay by moving to the cloud, where data centres’ own IT staff run operations.

All this has led Baird analysts to predict a valuation for AWS of between $40 billion and $50 billion in the coming years. AWS has said that usage of its cloud services increased by almost 90% in the last quarter of 2014, compared to the same period a year earlier, and that it will continue investing in its cloud offerings in order to stay competitive. The company said that means developing new services while at the same time lowering prices.

To provide its global cloud services, AWS has data centres in locations around the world, from the Americas to Europe, South-East Asia and Australia, with a total of around 1.4 million servers running on the system; a figure that is expected to grow as demand continues.

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