NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Though IBM (IBM) is the less flashy of the two big tech firms reporting quarterly earnings after the bell Monday -- Apple (AAPL) is the other -- investors can expect more of what the lumbering giant has come to represent: Slow, steady growth.Last quarter, IBM missed revenue targets and reported a 12% decline in its services sector revenue, due in part to the faltering economy and its battle with big currency headwinds.
King is also keen to see IBM push the M&A envelope into less obvious areas. "We're in such a phase of intense industry consolidation right now that if a good, intriguing very innovative hardware company came up for sale, it wouldn't surprise me if IBM reached into its pocket and went for it," he said. Security specialists Blue Coat Systems ( BCSI) and Websense ( WBSN) have already been touted as attractive potential targets. There has also been chatter linking IBM to Israeli networking specialist Radware ( RDWR). The tech bellwether, however, recently warned that its acquisition strategy and organic growth could be impacted by increased regulation of the derivatives market. In midday trading Monday, IBM was up 92 cents to $141.98. --Written by James Rogers in New York, with additional reporting by Maggie Overfelt. >To follow the writers on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/jamesjrogers and http://twitter.com/maggieoverfelt. >To submit a news tip, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.