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And now, I’ll turn the call over to Mark Loughridge.Mark Loughridge Thank you for joining us today. This quarter we continued the trend of improving business performance; increasing constant currency revenue growth, expanding margin, and once again, delivering double-digit earnings per share growth. We’ve now grown EPS in each of the last 30 quarters. And since the beginning of our 2010 roadmap, we’ve grown EPS at a double-digit rate in 12 of the last 14 quarters. Our revenue growth of 2% was two points better than our constant currency performance in the first quarter, and seven points better than our fourth quarter growth rate. Our revenue growth would have been about a point higher, adjusting for the divested PLM business. So on this basis, the improvement was broad based across all segments and all geographies, including Europe. Our performance is driven by the investments we’ve been making to capture growth opportunities and to deliver value to our clients. We’ve been investing heavily to build out the infrastructures in the emerging countries. This quarter, our growth markets were up 14%, or 9% of constant currency; led by the BRIC countries which were up 16% of constant currency. Our performance in the growth markets has consistently outpaced the major markets. And as a result, for the first half of this year, our business in the growth markets is now as large as our Euro-Zone business for the first time. We’ve been investing to extend our technology leadership. Earlier this year we introduced Power7 technology to our Midrange unit servers. And this quarter, the Midrange grew 11%, which resulted in four-points-a-share gain in Power Systems. In the third quarter, we’ll have Power7 across our entire UNIX product line. And we’ll introduce and ship our next generation mainframe solution. We have been investing in key growth areas such as Business Analytics. Our Business Analytics revenue was up 14%, which contributed to the strong performance of both Software and Global Business services.
Global Business Services revenue growth improved to 3%, and Software Key-Branded Middleware was up 10% at constant currency. And we took share again, this quarter in Software.We’ve been investing in acquisitions to build our skills and technology in support of our growth initiatives. In the first half, we have closed six acquisitions and announced another three, for a total of about $3 billion. These acquisitions add to our capabilities in areas such as Industry Solutions for Smarter Planet Initiatives, and Business Analytics and Cloud Computing. In this quarter, we also continued to improve our profit profile, expanding pre-tax margin by a point, and growing earnings per share by 13% to $2.61. And remember, we’ve delivered this profit performance compared to a strong second quarter of 2009, where we expanded pre-tax margin by over four points, and grew EPS by 18 percent. So now based on our first-half performance and our view of the second half, we’re increasing our expectations for the full year of 2010 to at least $11.25 of earnings per share. That’s up from our view in April, and up $0.25 from January. Now, let’s turn to the financial results for the quarter with a quick walk down the P&L. We delivered $23.7 billion of revenue. That’s up 2% as reported in a constant currency. We completed the sale of the Software PLM operations at the end of the first quarter. This divestiture impacted IBM’s revenue growth by about a point, and our Software growth by about four points. This quarter we dealt with a sharp strengthening of the Dollar versus the Euro. Currency provided 40 basis points of revenue growth as compared to the 200-to-300 basis points projected based on mid-April spot rates. So that’s a two-to-three point impact to our revenue growth. Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com