IBM's global revenue 2010-2018, by business segment

In 2018, IBM’s Technology Services and Cloud Platforms division generated over 40 percent of the company’s revenue, which was around 79 billion U.S. dollars. This is a change from 2014 and before, where the main source of revenue was Global Technology Services. In 2016, IBM changed its segment reporting to reflect the company’s shift away from being a hardware, software and services company, and towards becoming a cognitive solutions and cloud platform company.

Realignment of IBM’s software portfolio

The change in business segment reporting followed IBM’s pursuit of management system and organizational changes. For example, the company created a cognitive solutions business, the segment where initiatives such as Watson, Watson health, Watson IoT, and transaction processing software are held. Merging multiple segments into one helped highlight their mutual importance to each other: linking Integration Software with Cloud Infrastructure and Platform, for example, reflected the importance of integration software to enterprise-grade hybrid clouds. These changes were made to provide investors with additional transparency on the direction of IBM’s business.

Moving to the hybrid cloud

One of IBM’s responses to its declining revenue is restructuring some of their business, moving into areas like cloud, blockchain, and artificial intelligence. The company looks to address its underinvestment in cloud by developing software and platform products. For example, its platform IBM Cloud aims to help customers shift their operations to the cloud environments. In early 2019, IBM acquired open source technology company Red Hat, which offers a hybrid cloud platform. As a major and innovative player in the industry, IBM consistently spends around 5 billion U.S. dollars on research and development, such as on advances in quantum computing and artificial intelligence.

IBM's global revenue from 2010 to 2018, by business segment

Technology Services & Cloud PlatformsCognitive SolutionsGlobal Business ServicesSystemsGlobal FinancingOtherSystems HardwareSoftwareGlobal Technology ServicesSystems and Technology
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Release date

February 2019



Survey time period

2010 to 2018

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