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January 22, 2013

IBM Q4 Earnings Beat Predictions with $6.1 Billion Profit

By Erin Harrison, Executive Editor, Cloud Computing

Mark Loughridge, IBM’s (News - Alert) chief financial officer, kicked off the tech giant’s fourth quarter earnings call on Tuesday with good news for investors: the Armonk, N.Y.-based company reported net income of $6.1 billion for the fourth quarter. Earnings per share were $5.39, while sales hit $29.3 billion.

Thomson (News - Alert) Reuters surveyed Wall Street analysts that expected IBM would post earnings of $5.25 a share on $29.1 billion in revenue. Shares rose 3.6 percent in after-hours trading, according to CNN.

Fourth-quarter net income was $5.8 billion compared with $5.5 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, an increase of 6 percent. Operating (non-GAAP) net income was $6.1 billion compared with $5.6 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, an increase of 10 percent.

Total revenues for the fourth quarter of 2012 of $29.3 billion decreased 1 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011. Without the impact of the divested Retail Store Solutions (RSS) business, revenue increased one percent, adjusting for currency.

Last year, IBM set records for profit, earnings per share and free cash flow, according to Ginni Rometty chairman, president and CEO of IBM.

“Our performance in the fourth quarter and for the full year was driven by our strategic growth initiatives – growth markets, analytics, cloud computing, Smarter Planet solutions – which support our continued shift to higher-value businesses,” Rometty said in a statement.

IBM raised its outlook for 2013 expecting to deliver full-year 2013 GAAP earnings per share of at least $15.53; and operating (non-GAAP) earnings per share of at least $16.70.

“Looking ahead, we continue to invest to deliver innovations for the enterprise in key areas such as big data, mobile solutions, social business and security, while expanding into new markets and reaching new clients,” Rometty said. “We are well on track toward our long-term roadmap for operating EPS of at least $20 in 2015.”

Net income for the year ending Dec. 31, 2012 was $16.6 billion compared with $15.9 billion in the prior year, an increase of 5 percent. Operating (non-GAAP) net income was $17.6 billion compared with $16.3 billion in 2011, an increase of eight percent.

North America led IBM’s growth for the fourth quarter, with revenues of $12.5 billion, flat from the 2011 period. Revenues from Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA) were $9.1 billion, down three percent, adjusting for currency. Asia-Pacific revenues increased five percent $7 billion. OEM revenues were $679 million, down five percent compared with the 2011 fourth quarter.

Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli
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