IBM revenue falls for the 12th consecutive quarter

Joe Hall
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IBM recorded falling sales and revenue in its first quarter. (Source: Getty)

The figures

IBM reported a drop in quarterly revenue for the 12th consecutive quarter as the company continues to trim unprofitable businesses and refocus on cloud-computing initiatives.

Total revenue fell to $19.6bn (£13.15bn) from $22.2bn a year earlier, as the company battled against poor performance in growth markets and a stronger dollar. Revenues from growth markets decreased by 16 per cent, while Asia-Pacific turnover fell even further 18 per cent to $4.1bn.

Sales at the blue-chip company dropped 12 per cent to $19.59bn while profit dipped two per cent from a year earlier to $2.3bn.

Why it's interesting

IBM's slow turnaround under chief executive Ginni Rometty has seen its share price slide by 13 per cent in the last 12 months, but there were signs that the decision to shed low-profit businesses such as cash registers and focus on cloud computing is an approach that could pay off in the long-term.

Revenue and sales from its cloud products soared compared to a year ago, with figures from the latter growing from $2.3bn to $3.8bn and turnover for the last 12 months reaching $7.7bn.

What IBM said

In the first quarter we had a strong start to the year. Our strategic imperatives growth rate accelerated, demonstrating the power of our offerings in these new opportunities and contributing to improved revenue performance.

Our focus on higher value through portfolio transformation and investment in key areas of the business drove continued margin expansion.

- IBM chief executive Ginni Rometty.

In short

IBM is reaching for the clouds, but being weighed down by falling revenues and unprofitable businesses.

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