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About IBM Global Business Services

For those that knew IBM from its reputation as a manufacturer of hardware, the current iteration of the company may be hard to recognize. The company that existed in 2020 was the result of two major business events early in the millennium. The first occurred in post-Enron-scandal 2002, when IBM emerged from the feeding frenzy of Big Four accounting firms grasping the prize of PricewaterhouseCoopers' consulting arm—the tech firm's first major foray into the world of service provision. Two years later, the historic $1.8 billion sale of its computing systems and PC hardware side of the business to Chinese manufacturer Lenovo completed the change of direction for IBM, sending the firm inexorably down the consulting path, and ensuring a bright future for the Global Services division.

Having thus moved away from its traditional business model into the realm of consulting services, IBM made a concerted effort to attract clients to its higher-value corporate services packages of research, software and services, specializing in providing the best skills, not the best prices. In 2016, IBM first 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. In 2020, IBM’s global technology services segment generated $25.8 billion or 35% of the company’s total revenue of $73.6 billion.

Another New Beginning

And thus another major change for the company was announced. IBM would spin off its independent managed infrastructure services provider (MSP) business into a new public company, creating two independent companies - IBM and the newly-named "Kyndryl." With the spinoff of Kyndryl by the end of 2021, IBM Global Services will focus on technology development for hybrid cloud computing and digital transformation. The company will retains its $8 billion Global Technology Services cloud services consulting business; the $17 billion Global Business Services unit; the IBM systems business; and software products around big data, artificial intelligence and security. Kyndryl will have a managed IT services portfolio of six global practices that span Cloud; Applications, Data & AI; Security & Resiliency; Core Enterprise & Cloud; Network & Edge; and Digital Workplace, as well as an advisory and implementation services practice.

Of course, effective consulting requires access to fresh research and analysis. IBM Services will maintain sources for both through the IBM Institute for Business Value. The institute provides strategic insights and recommendations to help clients capitalize on new opportunities.  It is comprised of consultants around the world who conduct research and analysis in 20 industries and across five functional disciplines, including human capital management, financial management, corporate strategy, supply chain management and customer relationship management. 


Why Work Here

Big Blue, at your service

While many of the consulting industry's traditional management and strategy firms have scrambled in recent years to incorporate IT into their practice areas, IBM has entered the industry from the opposite door. Though Big Blue always will be associated with computers, the company's business model over the past decade has trended toward services. These days, the Global Services division, including business consulting and IT implementation, contributes more than half of IBM's total revenues-$48.3 billion out of $91.4 billion in 2006-and employs more than 190,000 people worldwide.

PwC joins the fold

With an entrenched reputation as a corporation of computer geeks, IBM has had to work extra hard to establish itself in the consulting arena. The firm's services division got a major boost in 2002 with IBM's acquisition of PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting, which added some 30,000 employees in 52 countries to the 30,000 IBM consultants already on board. The acquisition came about after an unsuccessful attempt by PricewaterhouseCoopers to take PwC Consulting public in 2002.

IBM Global Business Services

1 New Orchard Road
Armonk, NY 10504
Phone: (914) 499-1900

Firm Stats

Employer Type: Public
Stock Symbol: IBM
Stock Exchange: NYSE
CEO: Ginni Rometty

Major Office Locations

131 office locations across 96 countries

Major Departments & Practices

  • Application innovation
  • Business analytics
  • Business strategy
  • IBM Interactive Experience
  • Midmarket expertise