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International Business Machines Corporation
IBM logo
SloganBig Blue
Type [[Company_Type:=Public|Public]] ([[Exchange:=NYSE|NYSE]]: [ IBM])
Founded [[Year_Started:=1888|1888]], incorporated 1911
Headquarters Template:Country data US [[City:=Armonk|Armonk]], [[State_Name:=New York|New York]], [[Country_Name:=United States|USA]]
Key people[[Key_Person1:=Samuel J. Palmisano|Samuel J. Palmisano]], Chairman & CEO
[[Key_Person2:=Mark Loughridge|Mark Loughridge]], SVP & CFO
[[Key_Person3:=Dan Fortin|Dan Fortin]], President (Canada)
Frank Kern, President (Asia Pacific)
Nick Donofrio, EVP (Innovation & Technology)
Colleen Arnold, President IOT Northeast Europe
Dominique Cerutti, President IOT Southwest Europe
Industry[[NAICS_Code1_Title:=Computer and Periperal Equipment Manufacturing|Computer hardware]]
[[NAICS_Code2_Title:=Software Publishers|Computer software]]
[[NAICS_Code3_Title:=Scientific and Technical Consulting Services|Consulting]]
[[NAICS_Code4_Title:=Computer Systems Services|IT Services]]
ProductsSee complete products listing
RevenueGreen Arrow Up.svgUS$91.1 billion (2005)[1]
Operating incomeGreen Arrow Up.svgUS$12.4 billion (2005)[1]
(10.5% operating margin[2])
Net incomeGreen Arrow Up.svgUS$7.9 billion (2005)[1]
(9.3% profit margin[2])
Employees329,373 (2005)[2]
Iris Associates
Lotus Software
Rational Software
Sequent Computer Systems
Tivoli Systems
Contact International Business Machines Corporation
1 Corporate Plaza, Suite 100
Armonk, NY  US  10504-1783
914.499.1900  914.765.7382
[]   [ Mail]
Reference Year End: 12/31
DUNS: 95-123456
CIK: 0000123356
NAICS:33411 51121 54169 54151
Entity: [[Entity_Type:=Corporation|Corporation]]

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International Business Machines Corporation (IBM, or Big Blue; NYSE: IBM) is a multinational computer technology corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, USA. The company is one of the few information technology companies with a continuous history dating back to the 19th century; it was founded in 1888 and incorporated (as Computing Tabulating Recording Corporation (CTR)) on June 15, 1911, and listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1916. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware, software, infrastructure services, hosting services, and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology[3]. With almost 330,000 employees worldwide and revenues of US $91 billion[1] annually (figures from 2005), IBM is the largest information technology company in the world, and holds more patents than any other technology company.[4]

Since 2001, services and consulting (IBM Global Services) revenues have been larger than those from manufacturing (Hardware).[5] Significantly, IBM has also been steadily increasing its workforce in developing countries (notably, in IBM India) and retrenching in the US and Europe.[6][7][8] Samuel J. Palmisano was elected CEO on January 29, 2002 after having led IBM's Global Services, and helping it to become a business with $100 billion in backlog in 2004.[9] Palmisano replaced Louis V. Gerstner, who held the job from 1993 to 2002, taking over from John Akers, who left during a period of financial difficulty for the company.

IBM has engineers and consultants in over 170 countries and IBM Research has eight laboratories, all located in the Northern Hemisphere, with five of those locations outside of the United States.[10] IBM employees have earned five Nobel Prizes, four Turing Awards, five National Medals of Technology, and five National Medals of Science.[11]


See History of IBM.



BlueEyes[12] is the name of a human recognition venture initiated by IBM to allow people to interact with computers in a more natural manner. The technology aims to enable devices to recognize and use natural input, such as facial expressions. The initial developments of this project include scroll mice and other input devices that sense the user's pulse, monitor his or her facial expressions, and the movement of his or her eyelids.


Eclipse is a platform-independent software framework written in the Java programming language. Eclipse was originally a proprietary product developed by IBM as a successor of its VisualAge family of tools. As of 2006, Eclipse is managed by the non-profit Eclipse Foundation and the source code is released under the free software, open source Eclipse Public License.


Free software available at alphaWorks, IBM's source for emerging software technology:

  1. Flexible Internet Evaluation Report Architecture: A highly flexible architecture for the design, display, and reporting of Internet surveys.
  2. History Flow Visualization Application: A tool for visualizing dynamic, evolving documents and the interactions of multiple collaborating authors.
  3. IBM Performance Simulator for Linux on POWER: A tool that provides users of Linux on Power a set of performance models for IBM's POWER processors.
  4. Database File Archive And Restoration Management: An application for archiving and restoring hard disk files whose file references are stored in a database.
  5. Policy Management for Autonomic Computing: A policy-based autonomic management infrastructure that simplifies the automation of IT and business processes. (This is an ETTK technology.)
  6. FairUCE: A spam filter that stops spam by verifying sender identity instead of filtering content.
  7. Unstructured Information Management Architecture (UIMA) SDK: A Java SDK that supports the implementation, composition, and deployment of applications working with unstructured information.

Extreme Blue

Designed as a cross-disciplinary high-profile technology initiative, Extreme Blue is designed to pair up experienced IBM engineers, talented interns, and business managers to develop high-value technology. Great emphasis is placed on emerging business needs and the technologies that can solve them. Sites are operated in San Jose, California, Austin, Texas, and Raleigh, North Carolina, as well as outside the United States.

These projects tend to involve rapid-prototyping of high-profile software or hardware projects and business opportunities. Entry is competitive, both for interns and for IBM employees seeking career growth opportunities with a management focus.


IBM develops processing chips for gaming consoles. The Xbox 360 contains IBM's tri-core chipset Xenon. At the request of Microsoft, IBM was able to design the chip and ramp up to production volumes in less than 24 months (with co-production at Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing in Singapore.) Meanwhile, Sony's PlayStation 3 will feature the Cell, a new chip designed by IBM, Toshiba, and Sony in a joint venture. The Cell processor is already slated for use in other systems (Toshiba plans to use it on HDTVs), unlike the Xbox 360 chip, whose plans are owned by Microsoft. The Wii will (like its predecessor, the GameCube) feature an IBM chip (codenamed Broadway).

In May 2002, IBM and, Inc. announced the Butterfly Grid, a commercial grid for the online video gaming market. In March 2006, IBM announced separate agreements with Hoplon Infotainment, Online Game Services Incorporated (OGSI) and RenderRocket. The deals included on-demand (for Hoplon Infotainment and RenderRocket) and blade servers (for OGSI).

Big Blue

There are different theories as to where IBM's nickname Big Blue originates from. One theory is that blue comes from the color of the big, room-sized, mainframes that IBM installed in the 1950s and 1960s[13] and that the nickname was coined by business writers.[14] A second theory is the blue comes from the colour of IBM's logo,[15] and a third theory is that it comes from the fact that IBM executives wore blue suits.[13]

Corporate culture

IBM has often been described as having a sales-centric or a sales-oriented business culture. Indeed, it is arguable that its most important control device is the IBM Sales Plan. Traditionally, many of its executives and general managers would be chosen from its sales force. In addition, middle and top management would often be enlisted to give direct support to salesmen in the process of making sales to important customers.

For most of the 20th century, a blue suit, white shirt, and a dark tie was the public uniform of IBM employees. But by the 1990s, IBM relaxed these codes; the dress and behavior of its employees does not differ appreciably from that of their counterparts in large technology companies.

In 2003, IBM embarked on an ambitious project to rewrite company values using its Jam technology—Intranet-based online discussions on key business issues for a limited time, involving more than 50,000 employees over 3 days in this case. Jam technology includes sophisticated text analysis software (eClassifier) to mine online comments for themes, and Jams have now been used six times internally at IBM. As a result of the 2003 Jam, the company values were updated to reflect three modern business, marketplace and employee views: "Dedication to every client's success", "Innovation that matters - for our company and for the world", "Trust and personal responsibility in all relationships."[16]

In 2004, another Jam was conducted in which more than 52,000 employees exchanged best practices for 72 hours. This event was focused on finding actionable ideas to support implementation of the values identified previously. A new post-Jam Ratings event was developed to allow IBMers to select key ideas that support the values. (For further information, see Harvard Business Review, December, 2004, interview with IBM Chairman Sam Palmisano.) The board of directors cited this Jam when awarding Palmisano a pay rise in the spring of 2005.

In 2006, Palmisano launched another jam, called InnovationJam. Its most innovative aspect was that members of IBM employees' families, together with employees from IBM's customers—i.e. most of the world's largest corporations—could join in and discuss future products. Thus in September 2006, the openness of IBM—through its use of executive blogs and its active encouragement for its staff to discuss in open forum the future direction of IBM products—formed a stark contrast with that of HP, which had been caught using unethical methods to prevent executives from talking to the press.

IBM has, since March 1998 when it announced support for Linux, been influenced by the open source movement.[17] The company invests billions of dollars in services and software based on Linux through the IBM Linux Technology Center, which includes over 300 Linux kernel developers.[18] IBM has also released code under different open-source licenses, for example the platform-independent software framework Eclipse (worth circa $US40 million at the time of the donation)[19] and the Java-based relational database management system (RDBMS) Apache Derby. IBM's open source involvement has not been trouble-free, however; see SCO v. IBM.

Project Management Center of Excellence

The mission of IBM Project Management Center of Excellence (PM COE) is to define and execute the steps that IBM needs to take to strengthen its project management capabilities. As IBM’s project management "development team" or "think tank" the PM COE combines external industry trends and directions with IBM business, organizational, and geographic requirements and insight. With this as a foundation, it develops deliverables such as project management policy, practices, methods, and tools.

Its mandatory for all IBM PMs on Project Management track (dimension) to go through either the accredition or IBM certification. Junior PMs (Associate PM and Advisory PM) are accredited after self-assessment and authorization from their manager. Senior PMs (Senior PM and Executive PM) have to go through an IBM certification process with stringent criteria. By validating professionals’ expertise and skills against consistent worldwide standards of excellence for the project management community, certification helps maintain customer confidence in the high quality of IBM professionals and it recognizes IBM professionals for their skills and experience.

Becoming certified is public recognition of achieving a significant career milestone and demonstrating expertise in the profession. Prior to applying for IBM certification the individual must have-

  1. successfully passed PMI exam (i.e. be a certified PMP)
  2. verifiable documentation and approval for mastery/expertise in a well-defined set of PM skills
  3. certain number of years of PM experience spanning at least 3 verifiable projects within the immediate 5 years with specific role, team size, budget and specialty requirements
  4. verifiable documentation and proof of at least one area of specialty
  5. demonstrated the use of IBM's Worldwide Project Management Method (WWPMM)
  6. completed extensive classroom and online education including passing the class-end exam

IBM PM Certification is a well-defined review and verification process with many intricate details. In it's most simplified form, it broadly involves-

  1. Candidate preparing a detailed package with proof of above requirements
  2. Package review, approval, and support by at least two levels of Senior Management
  3. Package review and re-verification by PM COE expert
  4. Personal interviews with the PM COE Certification board comprising of IBM Executives and selected Senior Managers
  5. Candidates whose experience, skills, knowledge and education are deemed valid, verifiable and accurate, are certified by the board as either Certified Senior Project Manager (CSPM) or Certified Executive Project Manager (CEPM).

IBM PM Certification is a significant achievement for any IBMer. It is a deliberately long process with multiple checkpoints designed to ensure the integrity, fairness and validity of the certification.

Corporate affairs

Diversity and workforce issues

IBM's efforts to promote workforce diversity and equal opportunity date back at least to World War I, when the company hired disabled veterans. IBM was the only technology company ranked in Working Mother magazine's Top 10 for 2004, and one of two technology companies in 2005 (the other company being Hewlett-Packard).[20][21]

The company has traditionally resisted labor union organizing, although unions represent some IBM workers outside the United States. Alliance@IBM, part of the Communications Workers of America, is trying to organize IBM in the U.S. with very little success.

In the 1990s, two major pension program changes, including a conversion to a cash balance plan, resulted in an employee class action lawsuit alleging age discrimination. IBM employees won the lawsuit and arrived at a partial settlement, although appeals are still underway.

Historically IBM has had a good reputation of long-term staff retention with few large scale layoffs. In more recent years there have been a number of broad sweeping cuts to the workforce as IBM attempts to adapt to changing market conditions and a declining profit base. After posting weaker than expected revenues in the first quarter of 2005, IBM eliminated 14,500 positions from its workforce, predominantly in Europe. On June 8 2005, IBM Canada Ltd. eliminated approximately 700 positions. IBM projects these as part of a strategy to 'rebalance' its portfolio of professional skills & businesses. IBM India and other IBM offices in China, the Philippines and Costa Rica have been witnessing a recruitment boom and steady growth in number of employees.

On October 10 2005, IBM became the first major company in the world to formally commit to not using genetic information in its employment decisions. This came just a few months after IBM announced its support of the National Geographic Society's Genographic Project.

Gay rights

IBM provides employees' same-sex partners with benefits and provides an anti-discrimination clause. The Human Rights Campaign has consistently rated IBM a 100, the highest score, on its index of gay-friendliness since it began compiling its report on major companies in 2002.[1]

Board of directors

Current members of the board of directors of IBM are: Cathleen Black, Ken Chenault, Juergen Dormann, Michael Eskew, Shirley Ann Jackson, Charles F. Knight, Minoru Makihara, Lucio Noto, James W. Owens (effective 1 March 2006), Samuel J. Palmisano, Joan Spero, Sidney Taurel, Charles Vest, and Lorenzo Zambrano.

Definitions of IBM on the Web:

  • International Business Machines Corporation, abbreviated IBM and nicknamed "Big Blue," , is a multinational computer technology and consulting ...

  • An international computer technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, USA.

  • IBM China/ Hong Kong Limited.

  • This does not stand for a once dominant but now rarely heard-of computer company, but for the Izu Bonin-Marianas Island arc in the Western Pacific.

  • (International Business Machines) in 1981 introduced the IBM Personal Computer which provided the spark for the home-computer revolution. Additionally, IBM provides customer solutions through the use of advanced information technology. ...

  • (IAP-binding motif). A conserved tetrapeptide sequence that is found in caspases and in IAP-regulatory proteins (see Fig. 4). ...

  • At Cravath, Boies assisted top litigator Thomas Barr in defending IBM in the 13-year antitrust cases brought by the Justice Department and many ...

References and footnotes

  1. ^ a b c d <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM Stock Report". Morningstar, Inc. Retrieved 2006-06-27.
  2. ^ a b c <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM: Company Overview". Reuters. Retrieved 2006-06-27.
  3. ^
  4. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM maintains patent lead, moves to increase patent quality". 2006-01-10. Cite has empty unknown parameter: |1= (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  5. ^ Template:Citation/core
  6. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Big Blue Shift". 2006-06-05. Retrieved 2006-08-24. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  7. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM wakes up to India's skills". 2006-06-05. Retrieved 2006-08-24. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  8. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM cuts 13000 employees, mostly in Europe". 2005-05-05. Retrieved 2006-06-25. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  9. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Personal biography". March 2006. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  10. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Worldwide IBM Research Locations". IBM. Retrieved 2006-06-21.
  11. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Awards & Achievements". IBM. Retrieved 2006-07-01.
  12. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM Almaden Research Center".
  13. ^ a b Template:Citation/core
  14. ^ Template:Citation/core
  15. ^ Template:Citation/core
  16. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>Samuel J. Palmisano (2004-04-27). "Speeches". IBM. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  17. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"IBM launches biggest Linux lineup ever". IBM. 1999-03-02. Archived from the original on 1999-11-10. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  18. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>Farrah Hamid (2006-05-24). "IBM invests in Brazil Linux Tech Center". Cite has empty unknown parameter: |1= (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  19. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Interview: The Eclipse code donation". IBM. 2001-11-01. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  20. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"100 best companies for working mothers 2004". Working Mother Media, Inc. Archived from the original on 2004-10-17.
  21. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"100 best companies 2005". Working Mother Media, Inc. Retrieved 2006-06-26. Cite has empty unknown parameter: |1= (help)
  • Gerstner, Jr., Louis V. (2002). Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? HarperCollins. ISBN 0-00-715448-8.
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