| International Business Machines Corp. |
New Orchard Rd.
Armonk, NY 10504
Year founded: 1911
Industry: information technology
Net Income/Loss: n/a
Earnings per share: n/a
Stockholder equity: n/a
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
Market capitalization: n/a
52-week high: n/a
52-week low: n/a
Chairman and CEO: Samuel J. Palmisano
CFO: John R. Joyce
Local employees: 7000
Description: IBM is the world's biggest computer hardware company and the biggest technology services company. It makes laptop computers, servers and storage systems. With the acquisition of PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting in 2002, consulting and services revenue now outstrip hardware sales.
Developments: Big Blue spent the past year again struggling with the steep downturn in corporate spending on technology. Unlike tech companies that cater to consumers, such as Yahoo Inc. and Apple Computer Inc., IBM has not been able to rely on consumers' indefatigable buying habits. Instead the company sells many of its computers and services to other major corporations. IBM cut costs and got profits growing robustly. While revenue grew almost 10 percent in 2003, earnings more than doubled. Executives have even begun saying they're signing up more corporate business. John Joyce, the chief financial officer, predicted the information technology industry will begin a growth cycle in 2004 after several years of decline. "Over the longer term, you should expect IBM revenues to grow at mid- to high single digits and earnings per share at low double digits," he told analysts on a conference call in January. In February, a jury found IBM was not to blame for cancers developed by two former employees of a disk-drive factory in San Jose. Other electronics and semiconductor companies, worried a victory for the employees could bring more multimillion-dollar lawsuits charging health problems related to electronic manufacturing work, had followed the case anxiously. The company has also become embroiled in an offshore outsourcing dispute as it continues to add software design, call center and engineering jobs in low-cost countries such as India and China.
© 2004 The Washington Post Company