International Business Machines Corporation  (IBM)
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    Sector  Technology    Industry Computer Hardware
   Industry Computer Hardware
   Sector  Technology

International Business Machines Corporation

Business Description

International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) was incorporated in the State of New York on June 16, 1911, as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. (C-T-R), a consolidation of the Computing Scale Co. of America, the Tabulating Machine Co., and The International Time Recording Co. of New York. Since that time, IBM has focused on the intersection of business insight and technological invention, and its operations and aims have been international in nature. This was signaled 80 years ago, in 1924, when C-T-R changed its name to International Business Machines Corporation. And it continues today: IBM is the largest information technology company in the world, the world's largest business and technology services company, the world's largest consulting services organization, the world's largest information technology research organization, and the world's largest financier of information technology.

Over the past decade, IBM has been a leader in the IT market's shift of focus from selling hardware, software, and services, to the creation of solutions to clients' business problems. During the early years of the Internet's entry into mainstream commerce, communications and business operations in the mid-to late-1990s, value was created first through providing widespread access and then through the integration of business processes, such as supply chain, customer relationships and human resources. Today, IBM is once again leading the industry toward the more fundamental, industry-specific transformations of on demand business.

In its relationships with its clients, IBM has found that a majority of enterprises are concerned with four main issues:

• Demand for faster innovation

• Reducing expenses

• Integration across the organization's "value chain" (representing every transaction or interaction within an enterprise, with other enterprises, and with individuals)

• Demand for predictable return on investment

By redesigning their business processes and organizational structure, supported by and enabled by new systems operating environments, these clients are seeking to become "On Demand" businesses.

IBM defines an on demand business as an enterprise whose business processes are:

• Responsive to any client demand, market opportunity, or external threat;

• Integrated end-to-end across the company; and

• Integrated across industry value nets, the interconnected chains of partners, suppliers and clients.

An essential aspect of an On Demand Operating Environment is that its infrastructure be based on industry-wide standards (commonly referred to as "open standards"). In IBM's view, an investment in such an infrastructure provides the greatest returns, rather than relying on proprietary control by a single company or affiliation of companies. One positive development in this regard is the emergence of "open source" operating systems and programming languages that benefit from further development by the business and information technology (IT) communities, as in the case of the Linux operating system or the Java programming language.

Services and software to improve business performance for its Enterprise Computing clients. IBM helps its Enterprise Computing clients transform their business processes and gain competitive advantage by applying its skills and experience to processes specific to the client's industry or to business challenges across industries and processes. The company enters into long-term relationships and creates solutions for clients, on its own or in partnership with other companies, drawing upon its broad product and service offerings, and relying on its BCS organization, the capabilities of IBM Research, its experience in chip design and application, and the company's own viewpoint of developing trends in business and technology.

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