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IBM sees 6.5% growth in Q4 driven by hybrid cloud revenue

IBM has posted its highest quarterly growth since 2011 for the final quarter of 2021, with hybrid cloud adoption driving sales.

The positive turnaround for the company suggests that Arvind Krishna’s appointment as CEO in mid-2020 is starting to bear fruit.

For the December quarter, IBM brought in revenue of £12.4 billion, up 6.5% from 2020’s results. Its best results in ten years, it also surpassed Wall Street forecasts of £12 billion.

IBM shares are up 3.4% at the time of publication.

The company’s success has been driven by a restructuring of the business to focus on its software and consulting units.

In November 2021, IBM’s managed IT services business was repackaged as Kyndryl Holdings. Its low-margin, negative-growth had long been damaging IBM’s financial results.

It also sold off its Watson Health unit to private equity shop Francisco Partners in January this year.

“We increased revenue in the fourth quarter with hybrid cloud adoption driving growth in software and consulting,” Krishna said in a statement.

“Our fourth-quarter results give us confidence in our ability to deliver our objectives of sustained mid-single-digit revenue growth and strong free cash flow in 2022.”

IBM’s hybrid cloud business had revenue of £4.6 billion in the quarter, up 16% over the course of the year. For the full year, hybrid cloud revenue jumped 20% to £15 billion.

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